Palm Springs Law Blog

Thursday, December 7, 2023

Why the Holidays Are a Good Time to Approach the Subject of Estate Planning

The holidays are a time to reconnect with family and close friends. But this year, as you’re putting together that Thanksgiving feast or decorating the tree, you should make time to discuss the important topic of estate planning.

Why should you discuss estate planning during the holidays? It might seem counterintuitive and even a little gauche, but there are numerous reasons why the holidays are the perfect time to start talking to loved ones about planning your estate.

Everyone’s in the Same Place at Once

Many families are scattered all over the country — and in some cases, all over the world. Estate planning can be a difficult topic to discuss, and it’s made even more so when you’re navigating video chats, email, and other kinds of digital communication.

This is the kind of conversation that is best-conducted face-to-face. Since your family is already together under one roof, it makes sense to take a little time to at least start the conversation about planning your estate.

It’s a Great Way to Plan for a Prosperous New Year

As the holidays wind down and we start looking forward to the new year, we begin thinking about resolutions. Why not resolve to give yourself and your loved ones a renewed peace of mind?

It’s a good idea even if you don’t anticipate needing to put your estate plan into action for some time. You and your loved ones can rest assured knowing that you have a detailed plan in place when the time does come.

Starting the discussion can be uncomfortable. However, nothing compares to the feeling of knowing your loved ones will be taken care of in the event of your passing.

A Thorough Estate Plan Is a Gift That Keeps on Giving

For most families, the holiday season is a time of love and gift-giving. When you think about estate planning, the gifts you imagine are likely the assets passed down to the next generation.

However, the real gift to your loved ones is the knowledge that your affairs can be settled the way you see fit. If you have no estate plan (or if your current plan is outdated), the distribution of your assets might be handled by current state and federal laws. And if the court has to administer your estate, your assets could very well be distributed in a way you never would have wanted.

If this were to happen, your loved ones could be drawn into lengthy, stressful, and sometimes expensive court proceedings. Dealing with grief and legal battles at the same time is incredibly difficult — it’s not the legacy anyone wants.

In many cases, estate plans involve charitable gifts as well. But as you may already know, these gifts often don’t only benefit the charity.

In fact, they can dramatically lower the estate taxes faced by your loved ones. In some cases, they can even lower your income taxes during your lifetime. Some gifts (like charitable remainder trusts) can financially benefit you, your family members, and your charity of choice all at once.

Need an estate planning attorney in Palm Springs?

Your family and other loved ones are an essential part of a strong estate plan. But so is a lawyer experienced in the world of estate planning and administration. This process can be both emotionally and logistically challenging, but a qualified attorney can help you streamline it as much as possible.

At Heritage Legal, PC, we’ve helped countless people like you achieve peace of mind for themselves and their loved ones. Get in touch today to start planning your legacy.

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