The idea of putting together an estate strategy may sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. The first steps are to identify where you are today and where you want to be.
Step 1: Where am I today?
Make a list of everything you own. A financial advisor can help you group your assets and make beneficiary designations on your retirement accounts, insurance policies and annuities and make sure they’re up to date. Things to consider include investment and retirement accounts, real estate, insurance policies or annuity contracts, wills, health care directives, and trusts.
Step 2: Where would I like to be?
Identify your goals. A financial advisor can help you begin to answer these questions and prioritize what’s most important to you. Don’t be intimidated, this is just a conversation to help you get started.
Things to consider:
• What do you want to leave to your heirs?
• Do you want to leave money to charity?
• Are efficiency and privacy important to you?
• Are you concerned about estate taxes?
• Do you have a minor child or a child with special needs?
• Do you have specific wishes or desires you would like to ensure happen if you were incapacitated or passed away?
• Who would you like to handle your affairs if you become unable to handle them for yourself?
Step 3: Work with your team of professionals.
An estate-strategy team provides a comprehensive and streamlined approach to developing a strategy that works for you. Each member of your team will have a different area of expertise. A financial advisor helps you understand the process, prioritize your goals and coordinates with the other members of your estate-strategy team. We can also discuss how your investment and estate strategies can work together.
Your attorney reviews your estate options and drafts legal documents. Your tax professional or CPA advises you on the tax implications of your strategies. Creating an estate strategy is a team effort Ask a financial advisor today about how you can work together to begin creating your personal estate strategy.
For more information, contact Edward Jones financial advisor John Renda at (718) 969-2606 or at [email protected]