There is much more to estate planning than writing a will or seeing a lawyer about codifying your wishes for gifting and disbursement of your life assets. Before you ever get to this stage in your estate planning, you must spend hours of thoughtful analysis about, not only your life goals, but the life goals of those who are to benefit from your gifting. Taxes, of course, are also a consideration.
Individuals must first consider providing for their own financial well being, throughout their entire lives. Today, the probability is quite high that many of us will live to age 100 or more. When retirement comes at age 65, that means that we have to provide for our financial needs for the next 35 years. Thus, the first goal of a family, when doing estate planning, is to provide for the surviving spouse, under all conceivable circumstances, until the end of survivor’s lifetime.
Some families have special needs children that they must provide for. This is an area where special expertise is required, structuring trusts and providing guardians for those children after their parents have died. A financial advisor does not normally have such expertise. A good financial advisor will be in touch with persons who do have this expertise. Your advisor will recommend lawyers and facilitators to help you as you consider these problems.
Estate planning is a financial matter as well as a legal process. The easiest and most direct route to sound planning is through the use of an in-depth cash flow analysis that takes into consideration all of the family’s goals; an analysis that verifies there will be sufficient money to fund those goals.
The heart of every estate plan is a thoughtful statement of personal goals. This is perhaps the most difficult part of the estate planning process. Once you know your goals, it is relatively easy to utilize the expertise of your financial advisor to assist you to build a plan that will accomplish those goals. It is important that this planning process is not left to chance or delayed until there is no longer sufficient time to do the job thoroughly and precisely. Sound estate planning is done early in your life and then reviewed periodically to adjust for life’s changes.
High Desert Investment Advisors 4801 Lang NE, Suite 110, Albuquerque NM 505-797-2644 or 505-469-3467
Serving Your Personal Investment Needs Since 2003
Information provided herein should not be considered financial advice. Please speak with your investment advisor.
High Desert Investment Advisors may transact business only in states in which it is registered, or in which it is excluded or exempted from registration. High Desert Investment Advisors is currently registered in the State of New Mexico, and has a de minimus exemption to transact business in other states.
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