Baby Boomers – people born between 1946 and 1964 – are often called the “sandwich generation” because even though many are preparing or already retired, they are also caring for children and aging parents. A recent survey says that only 43% of Americans have a will – mainly because they simply haven’t gotten around to it yet. If you have dependents – a spouse, parents, children – who rely on you for financial support, an estate plan will help you protect your loved ones after you are gone. For Baby Boomers,
1. Compare the Benefits of a Will versus Trust
A traditional will or living will is a comprehensive document to tell your final wishes and how you want your assets distributed. A will should also identify who you want to manage your estate and care for any minor children or dependents. A trust can bypass the costly and time-consuming probate process and make your assets immediately accessible upon your death. A trust can also reduce estate taxes, protect your heirs from creditors, and ensure that assets designated for your dependents are distributed according to your wishes.
2. Plan Your Digital Assets
In today’s age of technology, your estate plan should include how to manage or dispose of your digital assets. Digital assets are any electronic files, programs or records that you own or that you control – social media accounts, subscriptions and memberships, medical record portals, – and so much more! See more digital assets estate planning tips here.
3. Secure Your Future First
Many parents naturally want to make sure their children are financially protected after they are gone. But baby boomers should first make sure their own finances are secure and will last their lifetime before they give financial gifts to their children. An estate planning attorney can help you create a plan for generational wealth to protect your children’s inheritance.
4. Consider Charitable Donations
The tax laws for making a financial gift or charitable donation change frequently. An estate planning attorney can create legal documents that reflect your current wishes and strategically account for federal and state tax exemptions so that your beneficiaries and heirs and protected.
5. Talk To Your Family
Communicate the contents of your estate plan and final wishes to your family. When a loved one dies, family conflict and stress are too often a result, mainly because the deceased did not let their family know their wishes in advance.
If you are a baby boomer whos planning on how to protect your loved ones after you are gone, an experienced estate planning lawyer can advise you on the best options for your unique situation. To talk to a qualified attorney in Chicago or Lombard, contact the Estate & Probate Legal Group at 630-800-0112.