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AL Estate Planning & Elder Law Blog

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

Four Important Pieces to Your 2023 Estate Planning Checklist

As you begin the new year, are you thinking about the resolutions you set for 2023? Did you include being sure you and your family are prepared for whatever the future holds by creating an Alabama estate plan? We want you to know that we believe that one of the most important New Year’s resolutions you can make this year is to create your Alabama estate plan.  With your Alabama estate plan in place you can protect yourself and your loved ones both during your life and at the time of your death. During your lifetime, by working with your qualified Alabama estate planning attorney, you can create a plan that ensures your choices for your health care and finances are honored by your chosen decision maker. In addition, your attorney will also show you how you can ensure that your family will be provided for when you are no longer here with them. 

Do you already have an estate plan? That is good news. If you already have a plan in place, it is important to find out whether it still reflects your wishes for yourself and your loved ones. During the year many changes can happen within your family, your business, and your finances. Therefore, it is important to make sure your estate plan remains effective in not only protecting the future for you and your loved ones, but also by having the best tools in place to accomplish your goals. 

We would like to help you get started with your estate plan. Here are four important pieces to add to your 2023 estate planning checklist as you work on your Alabama estate plan in the new year.

1. Check to see if there have been changes in the law that could affect your estate plan. Changes in the law occur often, especially in the new year and there may be an impact on your estate plan, so contact your Alabama estate planning attorney as soon as possible.  Rest assured that your attorney stays up to date on the latest laws and information that could impact your estate and what changes may need to be made. Also, let him know of any changes to your family, like a birth, death, divorce, or other life update.

2. Your Alabama estate plan can employ a variety of legal planning tools to address how your assets will be managed and distributed in the event of your death or incapacity, among other things.  Without an estate plan, if you have a crisis or you pass away there will be no guidance for your family, your bank, your friends, or the court system. If you do not take the time to create an estate plan the court in Alabama may be required to step in for there to be legal authority for another to act on your behalf. This can be time consuming, costly, and public, and can be avoided by completing your estate planning while you have the capacity to do so.

3. Remember anytime is a good time to get started with creating an estate plan or updating it. However, the sooner the better. Now, if you want to maximize the potential benefits that your Alabama estate plan has to offer, then put your estate plan in place sooner rather than later.

4. Call for an appointment and meet with your Alabama estate planning attorney today. He will discuss with you the importance of lifetime planning. He will explain using tools, such as the durable power of attorney for your finances. He can assist and advise you choosing your decision maker, as well as your backup decision maker, for times of crisis. He may also discuss with you the difference between will based estate planning and trust based estate planning.

We know this article may raise more questions than it answers. We want to help you achieve the New Year’s Resolution of having an Alabama estate plan that can meet your needs. While nobody wants to think about death or disability, establishing an estate plan is one of the most important steps you can take to protect yourself and your loved ones. Proper estate planning not only puts you in charge of your finances, it can also spare your loved ones from the expense, delay and frustration associated with managing your affairs when you pass away or become disabled.

At the end of the day, legal planning is not just for you. Instead, it is for the ones you love most. If we can answer any questions for you on putting this estate planning in place, please do not hesitate to let us know. For more information, please reach out to our office and schedule a time to meet.


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