In this episode, Heather Satin of Satin Legal shares her extensive knowledge of estate planning and makes a particularly scary topic seem a little easier to understand. Heather gives us so much valuable information—from the importance of having an estate plan and HIPAA forms in place to choosing guardians for our children and beneficiary designations.
Moments You Don't Want to Miss [02:35] Heather explains why it’s so important to have an estate plan and what happens to your estate if you don’t have a plan in place if something happens to you [09:17] Why parents of minor children need to have a plan in place rather than relying on the state to handle their estate [14:31] What we, as parents, should consider when choosing a guardian for our children [34:23] When it’s worth considering a trust and what could go wrong with beneficiary designations and life insurance if you don’t have a trust in place [40:24] How we can make sure that our estate plan doesn’t just plan for our death but also plans for end of life care and medical issues [51:46] At what point kids entering adulthood should have their own forms of power of attorneys in place [1:04:28] Chelsea’s Top Takeaways Are You Protecting What Matters Most?
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Name Email I Want to Be Prepared! Key Takeaways on Estate Planning for Parents
Heather shared so much valuable information in this episode! To help you focus in on some of the most important pieces, we’ve summarized our top three takeaways here!
1 - If You Don't Have a Will, Your State's Standard Plan Will Take Effect
Heather emphasized that the state’s plan isn’t always a bad one – if you have a simple family structure, your kids are no longer minors, and you’re happy with your state’s policy – great!
But for a lot of us?
We want a say in where our money goes and who gets guardianship of our children – especially if it means their probate process is much faster and cheaper.
Treat estate planning as an act of love and don’t put it off for another day.
Recommended Estate Planning Tool: Trust & Will
2 - Have Real Conversations With Your Loved Ones Named in Your Estate Plan
There are a surprising number of people who don’t know they are named executors, trustees, or guardians in their loved ones wills. And that causes more strain and uncertainty.
We’re asking our loved ones to take on a burden – and it is a burden, even if they love us with their whole hearts.
So, before you name someone in your will, ask them if they are comfortable with it first. Let them know that you realize that it’s a lot to ask and that it is a burden. And – as Heather said – be ready for them to say no.
Would it be hard to hear them say no? Hard to discuss a world without you in it?
But a world where your children’s caretaker only takes them out of obligation – or where your child has to hear someone in their life stand up in Family Court and say they don’t want them – that’s worse.
3 - Remember That You Can Change Your Mind
Estate planning is difficult because it feels so overwhelming final. Like we’re carving our wishes into stone and what if we make the wrong choice?!
Yet, updating a will or even a trust isn’t hard. If relationships change, your lifestyle changes, or kids just get older and want a say in where they would go – make a change.
It’s better to make the best choice you can today than wait and have no record of your wishes when you need them.
Links & Resources Mentioned Financial Emergency Preparedness Checklist - Free Download Trust & Will Policygenius Family Emergency Binder - Smart Money Mamas Why You Need a Family Emergency Binder & Estate Plan Now How to Be Better Than Wizards at Disaster Planning 5 Myths About Wills & What Parents Need to Know Connect with Heather Link Facebook
Heather is a business and estate planning attorney committed to helping protect families and the businesses they run. Heather regularly teaches on estate planning and business law topics, and has held numerous positions in advanced legal education, including Editor in Chief and Vice President of WealthCounsel, a national estate planning organization dedicated to teaching and supporting estate planners, Director of Continuing Legal Education with Continuing Education of the Bar (UCLA), and head of Thomson Reuters’ California Legal Editorial Operations center in San Francisco.
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