Figuring out how to leave assets to loved ones can be more challenging than expected. You might start out wanting to evenly divide your estate, then find yourself considering the type of relationship you have with each identified beneficiary and heir. This can be a difficult process to work through, but estate planning carries the flexibility needed to ensure that one’s true wishes can be achieved.
However, to bring an estate plan vision into fruition an individual needs to ensure that the assets within that plan are titled accordingly. What we mean by that is that certain assets may not be subject to the distribution process identified by your will, which might be counter to your wishes. For example, a life insurance policy will likely name a sole beneficiary. Therefore, even if your will says that all assets are to be equally distributed amongst three children, only the named beneficiary will receive the proceeds from a life insurance policy. This same issue can be seen with retirement accounts, too.
So what can you do to ensure that your will is applicable to all the assets to which you want it to apply? One of the best ways to do this is to name your estate as the beneficiary of all policies. This will allow those assets to be subject to the terms of your will. Another option is to retitle assets so that a trust becomes the owner of them. This will allow you to dictate the terms of the asset’s distribution so that it is in line with your desires.
In its most basic terms, estate planning appears relatively straightforward. In reality, though, it can be a highly complex matter when carried out correctly. There is no one-size-fits-all when it comes to estate planning, either, which means that you need to make sure you are creating a plan that works for you and your loved ones. Skilled legal professionals who are adept at tailoring estate plans to specific needs can be highly beneficial in this process.