Young adults sometimes feel like they are invincible, which is due in part to the low death rate in this group. It’s important for them to remember that you never know when something is going to happen to you. For this reason, even young adults should ensure that they have an estate plan in place.
When you’re in your 20s and getting ready to set up an estate plan, you might wonder how your’re supposed to think about what might happen so far into the future.
Wealth is not a criteria
Some young people think that because they haven’t amassed wealth, they don’t need an estate plan. This thinking is incorrect because some components of estate planning don’t have anything to do with assets. You need to outline who gets what in your will and set specific plans via trusts, but there’s more to the estate plan.
Part of the estate plan is getting the living will and powers of attorney set. The living will and health care powers of attorney ensure that you only get the medical care you’d agree to if you became incapacitated. The financial powers of attorney enable someone to make money decisions for you if you can’t make them.
If you have children, your estate plan should include guardianship information. The guardian you name in the document will raise your child in your stead. The court must approve the appointment when the time comes for the person to get the children so make sure you choose someone who can handle this task.
You can also set up your letter of instruction. While this isn’t an official estate plan document, it lets your loved ones know specific information that they may find useful. You can put your social media account information in this document. You can also lay out your funeral plans so they know what to do. Think about what you’d want if you passed away now.
Estate plan can be modified
With the exception of an irrevocable trust, you’ll be able to change many facets of your estate plan as you mature. In order to have the plan that will help your loved ones, you must set your will, trusts and other estate planning based on what you want today. You should review the plan at least annually. You also need to look it over if you have a major life change, such as getting married or having a baby.