One thing is certain — everyone is going to die. However, no one knows at what point in their lives it will happen. While many Nevada residents engage in estate planning, some make costly mistakes by attempting to do so alone. Many others make the mistake of not doing any planning at all. Both situations could potentially cost an individual’s heirs an inheritance.
In fact, the biggest estate planning mistake made by many people is not documenting their wishes. Without a will, the state of Nevada will determine who receives your assets after death in accordance with a formula created by statute. There are many cases in which the people who receive distributions from the estate were not the ones the decedent would have chosen.
Another costly mistake that many people make is failing to periodically review their wills and make any changes that are needed in order to reflect their current family situations. Marriages, births and divorces, along with deaths, should prompt a review of estate-planning documents to ensure that the individual’s wishes are properly reflected. Wills are not the only documents that can carry out a person’s wishes. A trust might need to be considered in order to provide the maximum benefits possible to heirs.
Regardless of the family situation, estate planning can still be accomplished. Documents can be tailored to an individual’s needs and desires. Some people are still under the mistaken impression that only wealthy people need an estate plan, but that is simply not true. Every adult should have an estate plan in place.
Source: CNBC, “Don’t drop the ball when planning your estate“, Trey Smith, Sept. 13, 2016