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Estate Planning for Twenty-Somethings

Posted on in Estate Planning

estate planning for twenty-somethings, Illinois Estate Planning LawyerThere is a great misconception that estate planning is only applicable to older individuals who are nearing retirement or are already retired. The reality is, however, that adults are never too young to put some sort of estate plan in place. Obviously, the more assets and property you acquire may make planning more complicated. Still, even twenty-somethings should have certain documents in place—at the very minimum.

Health Care Advance Directives and Health Care Powers of Attorney

Most young adults do not ever consider what would happen to them if they suddenly became sick or incapacitated. Moreover, they are unaware that no one—not their parents, siblings, or other family members—would be legally able to make medical or health care decisions should they be unable to make those decisions for themselves. Having an advance directive in place could avoid the possible fracture that often occurs in families when they cannot agree on the same course of medical care. This is exactly what happened in the case of Terri Schiavo, who was only 26-years-old when she collapsed and went into coma with irreversible brain damage. A 15 year legal battle between Terri's husband and her parents waged over the course of medical treatment Teri would have wanted.

Financial Powers of Attorney

Naming someone as a financial power of attorney ensures that one's financial assets and obligations will be taken care of in the event he or she is unable to do so. With no such documentation in place, a family may be forced to petition the court for guardianship or conservatorship, which can be both costly and time consuming.

Wills

If a person passes away without a will, then the state makes the decision regarding who will obtain his or her assets. A person does not have to have a large amount of assets or real estate in order to draw up a will—even twenty-somethings own furniture, household items, vehicles, checking accounts, saving accounts, savings bonds, etc. A will ensures that your items are given to those individuals of whom you want to receive them.

Beneficiary Designations

If a young person has taken advantage of his or her employer's 401(k) plan or group life insurance plan, he or she needs to choose who the beneficiary or beneficiaries will be for those items. It is common for young people to overlook filling out the forms their employer provides to make those choices.

Consult with an Illinois Estate Planning Attorney Today

No matter what age group you fall in, it is important to have a solid estate plan in place to ensure that your wishes are met. Contact an experienced DuPage County estate planning attorney today to review your best legal options.

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