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“I’m Too Young to Need an Estate Plan”

The death of singer Prince at age 57 is a graphic reminder that it is never too early to get one’s affairs in order.  As of this writing, no will or other estate plan has been found for Prince.  The court appointed trustee of his estate estimates that over half of Prince’s estate will go for the payment of taxes.

Most people don’t have the tax problem Prince’s estate will encounter.  However, an unexpected death of a younger person can be fraught with problems.  If the person has minor children, who will act as guardian for those children until they reach age 18?  Will those children be prepared to receive their inheritance when they reach the age of majority, or would a trust for their education be more appropriate?  Who are the beneficiaries and contingent beneficiaries of life insurance and retirement plans?  Who will be in charge of the decedent’s estate?

None of us like to think about our own demise.  This is especially true of those in their 30’s and 40’s.  The simple fact is that none of us is immortal.  We don’t know when death will come, but we all know that it WILL come.  Being prepared for it and having an estate plan in place will greatly reduce the angst, confusion and heartache for those we leave behind.  Or those of you who resolved to get your affairs in order this year, why not get started on it right now.

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