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Mistakes with your estate plan could be costly

It is beneficial for every adult in Kentucky to plan for the future. Through an estate plan, it is possible to plan for the care of beneficiaries, set aside money for specific uses and accomplish other goals. Each person is unique and has different objectives, and every estate plan will be different as well. However, there can be problems and issues with even the most thorough plan when there are errors and omissions. 

Mistakes in an estate plan may not be evident until years later, and in some cases, it may be too late to rectify them. This is why you will want to be certain that your plans are up-to-date and do not contain any mistakes that could ultimately cost you or your loved ones time and money. Even a small issue can lead to big problems, and you can avoid these by carefully reviewing the plans you have in place or proceeding thoughtfully when drafting a plan.

Missteps can be problematic

If it is your estate plan, you need to understand what's in it and what the terms mean to which you agreed. This is helpful in case you want to have discussions with friends and loved ones about your plans, and it's a mistake to overlook the importance of having a direct hand in drafting and developing your own plan. Other common estate planning mistakes include:

  • Failure to update or include powers of attorney -- These documents deal with your care and finances in case of incapacitation, and you can use them to designate someone to act and make decisions on your behalf.
  • Failure to use or properly fund trusts -- Trusts are estate planning tools that can allow you to set aside money for a specific purpose, such as in the case of a minor child. These assets do not have to go through probate.
  • Failure to make updates -- Life changes, such as divorce, the birth of a child or other major events, necessitate adjustments in plans. You may need to update beneficiary designations and reword your will.

These mistakes can make things incredibly difficult if you become incapacitated or when it is time to settle your estate. To avoid mistakes, you will find it helpful to work with an experienced estate planning attorney at every step. Knowledgeable counsel can be invaluable as you make plans that will impact your future and your loved ones' interests.

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  1. Charles W. Dobbins, Jr.

    Charles earned his J.D. degree from the University of Virginia in 1974

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    Patrick T. Schmidt

    Patrick earned his B.S. in Accounting from the University of Kentucky in 1989.

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