Step 4 for Efficient Estate Planning: Execute

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Okay. You know what you have by gathering information, you’ve checked in with a lawyer to identify what the legal to-do would look like if you died and what it should look like, and you’ve reached out to your trusted people. You know your plan. Not just that you’re going to do a will or a trust or any other document. It’s bigger than that. You know that if something happens, you’re going to be good. You just have to get things signed. It’s time to go back to the attorney and execute that plan.

Step 4 – Execute

Surprisingly, this can be were things can go off the rails. Especially do-it-yourself plans. Each state has specific requirements. Remember that location matters. What you see in movies probably isn’t going to work in your state. That why lawyers are important. Not only do we set up the document and have you sign it in the way that meets the legal requirements. We can evaluate whether you are able to understand the document and take steps to not just meet the minimum requirements, but put additional safeguards in place to minimize questions as to whether you had the ability to do the documents.

Now that you’ve signed. Congratulations! You’ve gone a long way to minimize the legal to-do list your loved ones will have to work through when they’re grieving you. And, you may feel a bit like you’re at the finish line. In some ways you are.

But don’t forget to update your ownership documents, to match the plan you and your coach (the lawyer) figured out. Things like deeds, car titles, insurance and account beneficiary designations all should be double checked and updated accordingly. Remember, Thing 1 assets will transfer regardless of the will. This is your chance to make sure those directions are up to date.

We’re done for now. But, we’re not done forever. We still have two more steps to go to have an efficient estate plan. But, hey. Let’s stop of a second and celebrate something. You’ve done it. You have a plan. You’re loved ones are going to have a much easier process to deal with the legal stuff than they would have had otherwise. Do you know what that means? It means if you get an awful diagnosis, you can spend your time living instead of time in a lawyer’s office. It means that if lightning strikes you down out of nowhere, your loved ones aren’t overwhelmed by legal issues. Now that you’ve gotten here, take a moment to reflect on the fact that you aren’t guaranteed tomorrow. And now that you’ve wrapped your head around that fact, you can live like it. Your legacy is made up of now.

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