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Debunking 4 common estate planning myths

On Behalf of | Apr 21, 2023 | Estate Planning |

The internet seems to have the answers for everything. But, over the last few years, there’s been a lot of misinformation running ramped on the web.

Because of that, if you’re looking to make an estate plan, you may be led down the wrong path. Here are a few myths about estate planning debunked: 

Myth #1: Estate plans are only for the rich

Truth: While estate planning does benefit the wealthy in unique ways due to tax avoidance strategies, it can help anyone. Besides asset distribution, estate planning can include a power of attorney. A power of attorney can handle someone’s financial and medical decisions on the testator’s behalf.

Myth #2: Estate plans can’t be made till you’re 50 years of age

Truth: People can make an estate plan once they become legal adults. After that, there’s little that can stop people from making and updating their estate plans as they wish.

Myth #3: You must keep your ex-spouse in your estate plan

Truth: Many people include their spouses in their estate plans. However, after divorce, people may wish to remove their ex-spouses. There’s not much stopping a testator from removing their ex from their estate plan unless they made an irrevocable trust. An irrevocable trust can’t be modified or terminated without the beneficiary’s permission, which can be difficult with a combative or spiteful ex-spouse. 

Myth #4: Estate planning is best made in secret 

Truth: Many people wish to keep their estate plans hidden from prying eyes. This may be because people wish not to hurt the feelings of others and create family turmoil. It can also be a tough topic to talk about since it brings up the fact that a family member or friend will one day die. 

However, there’s nothing keeping people from discussing their estate plans with others. It may be best to discuss estate plans with people who will benefit from the estate. And, by working with someone who has a strong understanding of the law, you can ensure your estate plan won’t lead to legal conflicts.