Estate Planning is a very important piece of your overall financial picture. The first step is about picking a winning team. Here at the Tranel Financial Group we take the liberty to help you assemble your winning team. We work with several professionals who focus specifically on estate planning.
The approach we take with our clients is very much like our financial planning process, where we help them with every step along the way. Many times our clients will meet with the attorneys in our office along with their advisor. This helps the process and making sure all of the right questions are asked and answered. Working with a financial advisor through the estate plan process is a great benefit to the client.
Working with a Financial Advisor
1.) They already know your goals and financial situation, which can save you a lot of time and money in preparing your plan.
2.) They know which questions need to be asked and answered in the meeting to ensure you are efficient with your time and get the most out of your plan.
3.) They have previous relationships with attorneys, Accountants, and Insurance professionals that they know like and trust. This is very helpful for the client that does not have existing relationships.
In Step two, regarding the picture, it talks about fact finding. What I want you to do is think about your goals, every good estate plan is shaped by what you want to accomplish first by knowing that it will help bring all the information together in the way you want it. Like a frame of the house you need to first know what you want before you start to build your house. This will help avoid many frustrations and surprises down the line.
Items to take into account during this step are:
● Minimizing taxes
● Avoid probate
● How property will be divided
● Asset allocation
● Incapacity instructions
Once you define and address these items it now becomes the responsibility of the attorney to help decide what options would be best to achieve these.
The other steps listed in the image are pretty straight forward, one thing I will say is that like any good plan it is important to review it from time to time. Another important reason why you want to work with a financial advisor when dealing with your estate planning is because you are meeting with them on a consistent basis to ensure any major changes that happen are recognized and brought to the attention if a change or update needs to happen with your estate plan.
Other Good Information
If you are thinking about or in need of an Estate Plan here is a list of documents that you will need regardless of your age, health, of financial situation.
● Durable power of attorney
● Advanced medical directives
● Letter of instruction
● Living trust – not always required but an important piece of many estate plans
If you do not have all of these documents your financial professional or attorney can help you attain these. To get started with your estate planning, schedule a meeting with an advisor today.