3 Myth about legacy and estate planning - Debunked
Creating a will, taking out a life insurance policy, and naming beneficiaries for your 401(k) are all part of creating a sound estate and legacy plan, regardless of age or total wealth. While the phrase ‘estate plan' may sound like it's best suited for billionaires passing on wealth and mansions, it actually applies to anyone who may become ill or pass away. In other words, it's for everyone.
What is legacy and estate planning?
If you have put off estate and legacy planning because you thought it wasn’t relevant for you or your current situation you are not alone. In fact the majority of citizen fail to plan because of a lack of awareness over the benefits and the possible negative consequences. Yet planning properly and thinking ahead protects your loved ones and relieves them from added stress and responsibilities should something happen.
There are some common misconceptions that lead people to believe estate and legacy planning doesn't apply to them. If you are avoiding getting started based on one of these three myths, you are not taking an important step towards protecting your family. Read More
- I'm too young to start thinking about an estate plan.
Estate planning is essential at any age, especially if you have a strong desire to provide for your family, friends or specific charities. Although you may feel young and healthy, unexpected events occur every day. An estate plan makes sure that your loved ones can continue the legacy you have created. It is essentially financial planning for your family.
If you were to pass away suddenly without a will, how would you feel about your state of residence deciding who or what happens to your car, pet, bank account, 401(k), and home? What about the responsibility for your online bank accounts and social media accounts? By creating a will, you can control and define who gets your money, your tangible assets, and even your digital assets once you are gone.
- I'm not wealthy enough to create an estate plan.
Estate planning isn't just for the wealthy and it involves more than listing who gets your money, car, home, or jewellery. Everyone can benefit from a plan, no matter the income or asset level.
If you are a parent, estate planning is especially important, as it lets you appoint a guardian in your will to raise your children should that become necessary. You may also appoint responsibility for a beloved pet.
Another important aspect of estate planning, regardless of wealth, is the living will. This document details who should make medical decisions on your behalf, in case you should become incapacitated and cannot express your wishes. It ensures that decisions are carried out the way you would like.
- Life Insurance is all I need to protect my loved ones in the future.
Life insurance is an essential estate planning element that may help provide for your beneficiaries when you no longer can. However it's only one piece of the estate plan puzzle, and doesn't replace the need for a will because it doesn't address who will inherit your household goods, vehicles, or real estate. Nor does it account for guardianships for children and/or pets.
Estate and legacy planning can seem like a difficult process to get started. Our team of experts is here to help with your financial planning. To begin the discussion, contact us and a MetLife financial professional will reach out to you to discuss your options.
MetLife does not provide tax or legal advice. Please consult your tax advisor or attorney for such guidance. Any discussion of taxes is for general informational purposes only, does not purport to be complete or cover every situation, and should not be construed as legal, tax or accounting advice. Clients should confer with their qualified legal, tax and accounting advisors as appropriate.