One of the things about estate planning that leads many people to procrastination is the fact that they aren’t certain about where to begin. Your eventual passing can seem like it’s a long way off, and you may feel as though there is no urgency to have an estate plan in place.
However, you never know what the future holds and there are no guarantees. When you are planning your legacy it is your loved ones who are going to be the beneficiaries of the plan, so when you gamble without an intelligently conceived estate strategy it is your family that you are leaving vulnerable.
This having been emphasized, a good way to get started would be to create a basic framework. This is going to involve inventorying your assets so that you know exactly where you stand and what it is that you have to pass along to your loved ones. Of course you have to make projections involving your own anticipated expenses, and this is why retirement planning and estate planning go hand-in-hand.
Once you feel that you have a handle on your financial capabilities, you then must consider those who will be receiving inheritances. This can be a rather involved process on a number of different levels because your various family members are invariably going to be at different stages of life, and their personal proclivities will vary as well. So you may want to consider exactly how you would like to transfer assets each individual.
After you have a basic framework in place, the logical next step would be to identify an experienced estate planning attorney that you feel comfortable with and begin the actual process of devising a plan. Your estate planning lawyer will listen as you explain your intentions, analyze your assets, and map out a cogent plan for the future.