For many Georgia residents, their pets are their closest companions in life. Therefore, it makes sense for owners to be concerned with the care their pets will receive after they pass away. People want to provide for their children, other loved ones and even favorite charities, but pets have a special vulnerability. After all, they cannot provide for themselves or even express their needs. People may ask others if they are willing to look after their beloved pets after death, but these kinds of verbal promises are most frequently unenforceable.
Estate planning is not a particularly fun topic, so many people put off thinking about it. However, estate planning should not be rushed. It is a broad category that could encompass many aspects of one's life. Here are a few considerations Georgia residents might have when creating an estate plan.
An individual retirement account is a popular retirement-saving tool for adults in Georgia. Choosing a trust as an IRA beneficiary can yield several benefits. However, before an estate owner can designate a trust as the beneficiary to their IRA, they should be aware of the requirements for doing so.
Anyone in Georgia should create an estate plan, but people with chronic diseases or those approaching advanced age have an urgent need to document their wishes. A quarter of people ages 65 to 74 must grapple with the effects of chronic diseases. Half of the people age 85 or older experience cognitive impairment. People should strive to complete their estate planning documents, especially those necessary for medical care, while they are physically and mentally able to consider their decisions.
About half the marriages in Georgia and around the country end in divorce, which means that blended families are extremely common. Divorced spouses who remarry should revisit their estate plans regularly because failing to do so can have dire consequences. Disputes between heirs are often contentious, but they may be particularly bitter when children from multiple marriages are involved.
When people in Georgia think about planning for the future, they may be concerned about how they can best ensure that their assets are distributed according to their wishes. They may also want to do everything they can to ensure reliable support for their loved ones. As a result, many people turn to trusts as part of the estate planning process. Trusts offer a greater level of flexibility, customization and control than other estate instruments. In addition, they do not need to go through the probate system, so they do not become public record, offering more privacy in the process.
For single parents in Georgia, estate planning involves important decisions that can have a huge impact on the future of a child. These decisions are based on a variety of factors that include both the capabilities and the limitations of offspring, and they consider things like schooling, living arrangements, friendships, and financial stability. A solid estate plan creates a situation where a child can seamlessly transition into a new life after the death of their single parent.
Many people have a difficult time making estate planning decisions because they find it unpleasant to face their own mortality. Others recognize the importance but face hard choices based on specific issues with certain members of their family. This can be especially true when it comes to asset protection for high-net-worth Georgia residents.
When Georgia residents with significant means think about the future of their property, they may have a vision for how their assets will be distributed to those they care about. Still, many people refrain from in-depth overviews of their estate because of the complex interpersonal and emotional questions that the task can raise. However, for people with wealth, it can be particularly critical to have a comprehensive plan in place. Preparing a will or creating a trust is a great step forward, but it can be important to regularly review the plan.
Georgia residents who are interested in creating a strong estate plan may want to consider using a trust. Parents who have children with disabilities could benefit from using a special needs trust while individuals who want to help a favored cause could create a charitable trust. A charitable trust allows an individual to benefit from an asset while alive and then transfer the remaining value of that asset to a designated organization.