New Year, Same Resolution? Here’s a New Approach

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You know it, your family knows it, your poor gold fish knows it…you know because he’s about starved by the time you get around to feeding him. Let’s be real. Everyone knows it. You’re a procrastinator and it has never been a secret.

Like previous years, you’ve promised to do better and as each New Year rolls around, you make that tired but true resolution, “I will not procrastinate in *insert year*”.  Sadly, you manage to fall off the wagon by the end of January.

But, you can break this habit. How? You can make one goal to keep your resolution in 2018. Get your estate in order.

Simple Steps to Accomplish Your Estate Planning Goals in 2018

Starting from Scratch?

1.         Determine What’s Important to You. Do you have assets and real property that you want to pass on to a child or relative without worrying that they’ll have to fight for it in probate? An estate plan can help insure that your plans are fulfilled.

2.         Designate a Decision Maker. Do you have someone that you trust to make tough decisions for you if you’re incapacitated? By making this designation, your financial and healthcare needs will be made in the manner you wish.

3.         Decide Which Estate Planning Tools are the Best Fit. You’ve decided what’s important to you and who you’d trust to make sure your wishes are met but how do you actually do it? There are several estate planning tools available; starting with a simple will and getting as detailed as a trust. Even if you don’t think you need a will just yet, consider checking to make sure any deeds, powers of attorney or healthcare directives are in place. 

Need to Revisit an Existing Plan?

1.     Major Life Events? Marriage, childbirth, divorce, financial changes, a new health diagnosis are just a few major life events that will trigger the need to revisit an existing plan.

2.     Do You Plan to Make a Change in Assets or Real Property?  Will you be buying or selling any property? Be sure to understand how these types of actions can impact your estate plan.

3.     Will the New Tax Plan Impact Charitable Giving or Other Tax Benefits? If you haven’t already discussed how the new Tax Plan affects you, give your financial advisor and accountant a call to see what adjustments may be needed in the upcoming tax years.

Now that we’ve given you a few reasons to accomplish at least one of 2018’s resolutions, give them some thought. And, since you’re no longer a procrastinator, make it a priority to give us a call and schedule a consultation with The Ruffin Firm, today. We want to help you get your estate in order in the New Year.