Having an Arkansas estate plan is important for several key reasons. First, it gives you control over what happens to your assets, legacy and personal affairs. Second, it helps your loved ones and beneficiaries know your wishes with regard to asset distribution, medical care and so on – and it may also help reduce taxes and fees. Third, an estate plan helps your loved ones to access what you leave behind faster than they would if you did not have a plan in place at the time of your death.
According to Bankrate, your estate plan does not have to cost a lot of money or take a lot of time to draft. Instead, you may still reap the benefits of having a plan even if your plan is relatively straightforward and simple in nature. Most strong estate plans have the following three contents.
1. A will
The will gives you a chance to say who you want to take over your assets once you die. You may also use your will to say if you want to leave money to certain charities, or if you want to name a guardian for any minor sons or daughters you have.
2. A power of attorney
Powers of attorney give someone you trust the authority to make certain decisions for you. There are medical powers of attorney, which involve health care-related decision-making. Then, there are more traditional powers of attorney, which typically grant someone access to your bank accounts and financial affairs.
3. An advance directive
Advance medical directives let you outline your preferences when it comes to your medical care, should your condition become such that you are unable to verbalize them.
You may always revisit and supplement your Arkansas estate plan later, but having a plan that includes these three components should give you – and your loved ones – better peace of mind.