To follow up on my post last week, Estate Planning for the Average American, I thought it could be good to touch on estate planning for another group of people- young professionals. Considering I find myself in this classification, I realize some of the concerns, or lack thereof, which people in their 20s and 30s have. Among those, I can’t imagine that estate planning is at the forefront. However; along with typical future-looking actions like buying a house, contributing to a retirement account, and maybe buying a little life insurance, there are some relatively easy actions that can be taken to further solidify your loved ones’ well-being in the event tragedy strikes. Youth isn’t a reason to put off things like making a will or executing a power of attorney- rather it should be seen as an opportunity to do some simple planning before life gets more complicated.
With that said, here are 10 things that any young professional can do now in order to create a safety net for his or her loved ones.
1. Plan for the unexpected- Accidents don’t discriminate.
2. Name a Guardian for your children (even if they aren’t born yet).
3. Think about whom you want your stuff to go to and put it in a will.
4. Have a pet? Put an appropriate plan in place for its care.
5. Organize important documents and write down where they can be found.
6. It may not be pleasant, but consider end of life treatment.
7. Along the same note, consider funeral arrangements.
8. Ensure that proper beneficiaries are named on retirement accounts and life insurance policies.
9. Own a home? Ensure real estate is titled to reflect your goals.
10. Ensure that any casual conversations with friends or family find their way to the proper paper.
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