Planning for the future can be a daunting process, which is why many Colorado adults avoid it altogether. Others avoid the estate planning process because they assume that it is not necessary for their stage of life, income level or size of their estate. In reality, estate planning is critical for adults of all ages, but it could be particularly beneficial for those in their 40s. No matter how old you are, you have the right to have a say over what happens to your property and personal care in the future.
If you are in your 40s, you are in a stage of your life where you may be more settled in your career. You may also have kids, personal property, a family home and other assets you want to protect in case something happens. Careful legal and financial planning is critical at this stage in your life, and if you do not already have a plan in place, now is the time to act.
What do you need for long-term security?
Without an estate plan, state laws will determine what happens to your property and assets in case of your passing. Lack of a basic plan exposes you and your loved ones to certain complications, but taking even the most basic steps can help you have security and peace of mind for the future. Some of the most basic things you need in order to have a complete estate plan include:
- Will: This is a basic estate planning document that outlines what you want to happen to your personal property in case you pass.
- Trust: A trust is a legal way for you to set aside and protect assets for a certain use, such as the care of a special needs loved one or charitable giving.
- Guardianship designation: This allows you to decide whom you want to care for your children in the event you cannot do this yourself at a certain point.
- Powers of attorney: You can draft documents that will name someone to make financial and medical decisions on your behalf in case of incapacitation.
With these basic estate planning steps complete, you can feel confident regarding your interests both now and in the future. As an adult in your 40s, you may first want to seek an evaluation of your estate and objectives in order to understand the specific estate planning requirements that will be most important for you.