Nobody wants to feel stressed out, but it’s an unfortunate reality of the culture we live in. Levels of stress, particularly when it comes to the future, are on the rise.
One study found that 58% of Americans worry about the future at least once a week. Another study found that stress is having a moderate or major impact on the well-being of 55% of young people, 54% of whom are moderately to extremely stressed out about the future. Nearly 30% of young adults who participated in the study were mainly stressed about being able to survive financially. Money is a big stressor, but we also stress about our health, our families, our careers….basically, anything that has to do with where we’ll be in the next years to come. It’s understandable to be worried; no one can control what the future holds, and there may be much uncertainty depending on your specific life situation.
However, the negative effects of stress are well-documented. Stress can lead to high blood pressure, heart problems, obesity, diabetes, arthirits, asthman, depression, and anxiety; a recent study by Yale University indicated that chronic stress can even shorten your lifespan significantly. Stress isn’t good for you, and you should take steps to reduce it!
What steps you take will depend on what you are most stressed out about, but one of the ways that anyone who owns property or has family members who depend on them can get more peace of mind about the future is by working with an estate planning attorney to secure your assets and ensure your wishes will be carried out, no matter what happens to you in the future.
What Is An Estate Planning Attorney?
Many people are unfamiliar with estate planning – they may have heard the term before, but they aren’t exactly sure of what it entails and what estate planning lawyers do. An estate plan is a collection of legal documents, such as wills and trusts, that directs how your money will be managed during your lifetime and distributed upon your death. If you ever hear someone talking about getting their affairs in order, it’s likely that they are creating an estate plan.
An estate planning attorney knows all the most recent state laws, what documents people should have based on their goals, and how to customize an estate plan to someone’s unique life.
How Can They Provide Peace Of Mind?
One of the main jobs of an estate planning lawyer is to design an estate plan that will cut down on your stress about the future, because it will provide legal security for everything you own and everything you care about. Here are three ways that an estate planning attorney can give you peace of mind!
1 – Protecting Your Assets
Most people worry about money at some point in their lives, but there are so many things that can put your hard-earned money at risk that you may not even know about.
For example, did you know that if you pass away without a trust or jointly-owned property, court fees may add up to thousands or tens of thousands of dollars, and those will be taken out of the inheritance you had planned to leave your family? Or that if you have to enter a nursing home, your care won’t be covered by Medicare and you may have to pay upwards of $60,000 per year if you don’t qualify for Medicaid?
There’s also divorce, bankruptcy, creditor lawsuits…all of these are ways that your wealth can be taken from you if you don’t take time to secure it. An estate planning attorney will analyze your financial circumstances and your goals, and will get the right documents in place to guarantee that YOU, and not unexpected events, will control what happens to your money and when (including who inherits it when you die).
2 – Protecting Your Family
Your family matters most to you, but if you don’t have an estate plan, you could unwittingly make their lives very difficult in a few different ways if anything were to happen to you (such as you passing away or becoming incapacitated unexpectedly).
For one thing, they won’t know what you would have wanted to happen to your possessions or your care, and this can cause conflict. You may have heard of some cases where the spouse of a person and their parents argued about whether a ventilator should be unplugged, or when siblings argued over who should inherit the parents’ house – think situations like that. In some scenarios, this can break up families for good, and may even require a bitter court battle to resolve that can cost everyone thousands of dollars in legal fees.
If your estate ends up having to go through probate – a Utah court process that may have to occur if you didn’t have an estate plan – your assets may be “frozen” in probate court, and not able to be distributed to your family members (even if you had a legal will that said who should get what!) until probate is complete. Probate is notorious for taking a long time. It is expensive, and it requires a lot of paperwork and effort…your family may not be able to inherit the money they were counting on for months or potentially years.
An estate planning attorney can take your family’s needs and dynamics into account when creating an estate plan so you can have peace of mind that your loved ones will be taken care of!
3 – Protecting You
Your legacy matters. How your family remembers you after you’re gone is important to you, and how the last decades of your life unfold can affect your happiness (and again, your stress level)! An estate planning attorney will make sure that everything is set up so that everything you’ve worked for will last. They can also make sure that no unexpected events jeapordize your financial stability and ability to provide for yourself/live the kind of life you want to lead. They can set up trusts, powers of attorney, and other documents that will preserve your medical wishes, your life savings, and more.
Call Proven Law Today To Schedule A Free 30-Minute Consultation
At Proven Law, our estate planning lawyers are here to help you. We aim to be the very best trust, estate, and tax firm when it comes to planning for the future and taking stress off your shoulders! Our team has over 95 years of combined experience. We can explain your options and help you get an estate plan that gives you maximum peace of mind. Call today to schedule a free 30 minute consultation and learn more!