Tag Archives: estate planning

Singles Estate Planning

A common misconception is that estate planning is only for married people and families.  That is simply not true and, because nearly 47 percent of the adult population is single, it’s more important than ever to consider estate planning for singles.

Making estate plans is vitally important if you are a single person, and your planning will differ in many ways from planning for married persons. Further, if you are a single baby boomer, your financial strategies will be different than those for younger single people.  Here are some planning tips for single persons:

  • Plan to leave your assets in a way that you want.  If you don’t make a plan, the state has a default plan for you that won’t be customized at all.  You might have certain family members that you want to receive your assets, but if you don’t plan for certain people to receive certain of your assets, it may not happen.  Those people or charities probably won’t receive your assets because the state’s default plan will not take into account your own personal preferences.
  • Plan for incapacity. A medical power of attorney and a financial power of attorney make sure that your wishes are carried out during periods of incapacity.  These documents are very important for a single person because there is no spouse to make these decisions if you become incapacitated.  These documents allow you to appoint someone you trust to make these decisions for you.
  • Plan for retirement.  If you are nearing retirement age, try to remain employed as long as possible to increase retirement savings and Social Security benefits.  If you are younger, put aside as much money as you can each year into a 401k or other retirement savings vehicle.  People of all ages should also consider purchasing long-term care and disability insurance.

Calling an experienced San Antonio wills and estates attorney today will help get these plans in place so that you can coast into your golden years.

Considerations for Drafting Your Will

Drafting a will can be a complex and daunting task for most people and, because of that, most people put it off for years. Your wills and estates attorney can help guide you through the process with ease, but here is a primer on items you should be thinking about before drafting your will:

  • Name the people who will inherit your property — Most people choose their spouse and children to inherit property, but if you have neither, name other family members or friends. You should also choose an alternate beneficiary in case your first choice doesn’t survive you.

  • Name property — Your lawyer can help you decide which property to include in your will and what items to leave out because some assets, like life insurance and retirement accounts, transfer outside of your will. But you should start compiling a list of all of your major assets.

  • Name an executor — Start thinking of someone who could serve as executor to carry out the terms of your will. Talk to this person ahead of time to make sure they are willing to serve in this capacity.

  • Name a guardian for your children — If you have minor children, start thinking of a guardian and alternate guardian who could step in and raise your children in the event that something happens to both you and your spouse. Make sure that these people are willing to take on this very important role.

Once you’ve made these decisions, your trusted San Antonio wills and estates attorney can help you finalize your will and make sure that it complies with Texas law.