Financial and Estate Planning Remain Critical Even as Big Life Events are Postponed

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Studies indicate shifting priorities for the American public, which may mean putting off financial and estate plans due to the perception that they don’t apply to people at this current point in time. As people put off things like buying a home, getting married, or having children, it’s easy to overlook the need for an estate plan.

However, it is important to undertake basic financial and estate planning as this can help chart your course towards retirement, support people and charities you care about and provide clear plans for your loved ones when something happens to you.

Increased housing costs and rising student loan debt indicate that nearly half of American adults between the ages of 18 and 29 live at home.

This same demographic may be less likely to undertake estate planning steps such as creating a will, a trust, or a power of attorney for finances or healthcare. When a child turns 18, they legally have the right to make all of these decisions on their own.

Although they may still want their parents to be able to weigh in and receive critical information about their healthcare needs or finances, the only way to do this is to create an estate plan with the help of a qualified attorney. Estate planning and financial planning should be undertaken by every U.S. adult regardless of their age, overall health status, marital status, or whether or not they have children.

Retirement, too, is getting postponed by many people who work into their 60s or even 70s. A recent HSBC Quality of Life report looked at people’s views across multiple markets. Finding that in general, people intend to retire early than their predecessors, but that the current reality of financial markets and uncertainty make this very unlikely. Combine this with the financial implications of living longer overall, and some of the top concerns for most people include affording a comfortable lifestyle, ensuring their financial security and meeting existing financial obligations.

Although most people in the study had already saved at least some money for their retirement, over half of the respondents also shared that they felt unconfident or unprepared for that stage of their life. By retiring later, you may need to adjust various assets in your estate plan and ensure that you have access to these.

It is also important to think about what were to happen if you pass away before you use these assets for your own retirement. While many items can be named inside your will, others must be distributed according to beneficiary forms filed directly with the company managing the account. This applies to many retirement accounts and things like life insurance policies.

Ready to talk through your estate plan? Reach out to our Pasadena estate firm today.

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