In your 40s, you may start to think about how you want to move forward in your life as well as how you want others to be able to carry on if you pass away. While you’re still young, now is a time when you may have the most to protect, like your spouse or partner, beloved pets, children and significant assets.
Estate planning is an important part of getting older, so if you have not started yet, your 40s is the perfect time to consider it. In your 40s, there are a few things that you can do to get started on your estate plan and to make sure your rights, wishes and assets are protected. Here are three to take care of sooner rather than later.
Establish your health care proxy and directive
The first thing that many people do is set up a health care proxy and directive. Your health care directive is a document that will let doctors and medical teams know what you want to see happen if you can’t speak on your own behalf. For example, you could give your preferences on when to go on or off life-support.
Your health care proxy is the agent who can help carry out those wishes by speaking with the medical team. Also known as a health care power of attorney, this is an assigned role for someone you trust.
Get your basic will set up
Besides the health care proxy, you should set up your basic will. This will help your family avoid probate, which is costly and time intensive. Your will discusses things like guardianship, the division of your assets and even your burial wishes.
These are a few things to do if you’re just starting to plan your estate. Planning now is a great way to take stress off your shoulders and protect your wishes.