Houston, TX Estate Planning Attorney
At What Age Do I Need To Start Thinking About Estate Planning In Houston, TX?
It is very important not to fall into the trap of believing that just because you are young or don’t have many assets, estate planning is not necessary for you. Many people with low incomes or few assets end up under the impression that they need not bother finding an estate planning attorney or building an estate plan. This is a blatant misconception. People of all ages and all income levels need an estate plan that will fit with their family’s dynamic.
Estate Planning As A Young Adult
As soon as you turn 18 years old, you become a legal adult in Houston, Texas. This means that your parents cannot continue to make healthcare or financial decisions for you. As soon as you reach this milestone of adulthood, the next step is to find an estate planning attorney and follow his or her advice to begin your estate planning. This ensures that, if you were to suffer an untimely death or become incapacitated, your decisions would be protected. There are two estate planning documents that are important to create when you reach the point of adulthood:
- A Healthcare Directive: A healthcare directive outlines the choices that you would make concerning your own healthcare, in case you become incapacitated.
- Healthcare and Financial Powers of Attorney: A power of attorney names a particular person who is legally allowed to make decisions for you, if you are unable to make them. There are two different Powers of Attorney you should create when you enter adulthood: a financial Power of Attorney and a Healthcare Power of Attorney.
Estate Planning As A Thirty-Something
During the decade between age 30 and age 40 is when you are most likely to purchase your first home and have children. This makes it even more important to visit a Houston, TX estate planning attorney to put in place the next set of estate planning documents needed to protect your family:
- Will: Your will exists to make it clear who you wish to inherit your assets. A will also names the person who will be responsible for handling your estate, and decides who will be called upon to raise your minor children.
- Trust: A trust is another way to transfer your assets. A trust transfers them to a trustee, who will be going on to manage them for all your beneficiaries. Trust law can be complicated and requires planning with an estate planning lawyer in Houston, TX.
Estate Planning As A Forty-Something
When you become 40 years old, it should become apparent that any estate planning you haven’t completed yet needs to become a priority. This is also the decade that may be your last chance talk to your own parents about what to expect from their estate planning. Death is uncomfortable to discuss, but you need to understand their wishes while they are still here to explain them. Make sure they have all necessary documents prepared for protecting their assets and their medical decisions. If you find that your parents have not completed an estate plan in Houston, Texas, refer them to a qualified estate planning attorney.
Estate Planning In Advanced Age
Once you reach the age of 50, your estate planning should be in place and only needs to remain updated. When a significant event occurs, like divorce, marriage, or death, be sure to visit your Houston, Texas estate planning attorney.
Can I Estate Plan Without An Estate Planning Attorney?
Choosing and putting in place the estate planning options that are best for your family is not a simple task but it is an important one. You do not want to underestimate the value of an estate planning attorney in Houston, TX to guide you through each step of the estate planning process. It is always wise to take your time consulting with your Houston, TX estate planning lawyer before you decide on any legally binding decisions. An attorney will also ensure that your wishes are fully compliant with all applicable laws in Texas.
Having an estate plan ready when you pass away or become incapacitated is an extremely caring gift to give your loved ones. However, it is not just creating a will or an estate plan that matters. You also must ensure that it is all done correctly, and this can be quite a legal challenge. An experienced estate planning attorney in Houston, Texas can help you with meeting your all goals and with fulfilling the needs of your children and family. Whether you need to update your estate plan or completely start over from scratch, you should never skip contacting a professional, experienced estate planning attorney to get you on the path to your estate planning destination.