Despite the importance of estate planning, many people in Tennessee and across the United States either put it off or ignore it entirely. There are myriad reasons for this including the misplaced belief that it is not necessary or there is plenty of time to take that step. People who are unaware of the importance of an estate plan should know the trouble that can come up without one. Even a basic estate plan can be useful to protect their assets and ensure their loved ones are taken care of. For people with substantial assets, a more comprehensive strategy could be needed.
Index shows investors’ estate planning is often overlooked
An index from Wells Fargo and Gallup indicates that that slightly more than one-third of investors have a will. Four percent have created an estate plan. Seventeen percent have both. In its research, just over 1,700 investors at least 18-years-old were surveyed in mid-November. This information suggests that people who have high income and invest are not better-prepared than any other investors. However, as they age, estate planning is becoming a bigger priority. For investors under 50, 70% have not made any estate planning preparations. For those at least 65, it is 17%.
Worryingly, those who do not have any estate plan have frequently failed to inform their relatives of their decision. The survey found that 65% did not speak to loved ones in a significant way about or did not speak about it at all. Fifty-seven percent admitted they need to do more. Even with the growing number of older investors creating an estate plan, 45% believed they needed to be more proactive. Just over one-third are highly confident their family members will understand be supportive; 38% are somewhat confident; 13% are not too confident or not confident at all; 14% have no goals whatsoever. More than half (56%) prefer a “letter of wishes” that lists how they want heirs to arrange funerals and use what the investor has left behind. High-income investors are more prone to wanting this at 70%.
Estate planning should not be ignored, especially with the health crisis
Investors are not alone in their reluctance or indifference to creating a comprehensive estate plan. People are roundly ignoring this fundamental necessity even as a health crisis grips the nation. To learn of the options available and have the necessary guidance and help to craft a viable estate plan, it can be useful to consult with an experienced legal professional. This is true for investors and anyone else who wants to protect their assets and loved ones in the future.