“If you are looking at Baby Boomers, they are looking at what their cash flow will be in retirement,” says Carol Kroch, managing director, wealth and philanthropic planning at Wilmington Trust in Wilmington, Del. “Can they do the things they want to do? Can they retire? Can they keep the house? They are not focused on death.”
Retirement can be great, but postponing estate planning is not. Unfortunately, not thinking about wills and estate planning is a frequent issue, and not just for Baby Boomers. People want to believe that it’s something they can put off and deal with later.
USA Today recently published an article, titled “Big retirement mistake: Boomers with no estate plan,” that offers several tips for people who might be lagging behind in their retirement savings. The article emphasizes that there are three very important things to think about when you start your estate planning (this week!):
- Your property and financial assets;
- Your children (if they are not adults); and
- Medical decisions.
“Just because you are doing good retirement planning doesn’t mean you are doing good estate planning, unless you address all three areas,” the article cautions, and sets out some important things to remember when you create your estate plan:
- Work with an established estate planning attorney to help you protect the safety of your financial plan.
- Get comfortable with the laws in your state, as each state has its own probate laws. Again an estate planning attorney is your best bet here.
- Update all of your beneficiaries. Retirement plan and life insurance beneficiaries don’t pass through your will. These are totally separate and will pass based on your beneficiary designation.
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Reference: USA Today (April 8, 2015) “Big retirement mistake: Boomers with no estate plan”