It is common for young people to believe one of the most common myths about estate planning: that creating an estate plan is reserved for older or wealthier individuals, not them. Many of them think that they do not have to worry about the end of their life when they are so young.
But the reality is that no one, no matter their age, can predict what will happen in the future. However, an estate plan can help individuals plan for unpredictable events.
Once individuals in California turn 18, they can legally create an estate plan. So, here are a few things that young people should consider regarding their own estate plan:
1. You can provide for the people you love, regardless of your age
Regardless of someone’s age, an estate plan allows individuals to provide for their loved ones, should something happen to them. Without a will or an estate plan, the California probate court could take over the administration of someone’s property.
And there is no way for individuals to assure that their loved ones will receive specific assets and care without an estate plan, when the state takes over.
This is especially important for young parents. Even young couples who recently welcomed a child should consider establishing an estate plan to protect their children.
2. Choosing someone to speak for you is always important, at any time in your life
According to the U.S. News & World Report, this is one of the most critical reasons young people should have an estate plan.
One of the primary purposes of an estate plan is to let individuals make their wishes clear, even when they are not there to speak for themselves. However, individuals can also designate another person they trust to do this through powers of attorney.
Durable powers of attorney, whether they are general or medical, allow another person to speak for an individual in the event of an accident or emergency where that individual cannot speak for themselves. This kind of protection is critical.
3. You can protect your assets and finances
Younger generations, like millennials, often face several financial issues—namely, student loans. Naturally, many of them place significant value on the money they earn and the assets they obtain throughout their lives.
Establishing trusts or financial powers of attorney can help individuals protect their hard-earned money and choose precisely what to do with it after they are gone, whether they want to disperse it among family members or donate to their favorite charity.
There is no specific age at which individuals should start planning for the future. At any age, establishing an estate plan can help give individuals the peace of mind they deserve regarding their family and their assets.