Have you thought about what will happen to your property, belongings, treasures, and other assets after passing away? While this question can feel peculiar, it is something to seriously ponder once you are old enough to have established a life of your own. Estate planning helps ensure that your life wishes are abided by, and the loved ones you choose will inherit a segment of your legacy after your departure.

You may be wondering, when is the right time to start thinking about drafting your first will or trust? Well, if you’ve even asked yourself this question, then it’s probably time to do so now. Regardless of your age or financial status, here are examples of life events that are often a sign it’s time to establish an estate plan:

  • You have a savings account. Once you have a savings account, the next step will be to choose where that money will go in the event of your passing. This confirms that the money within this account will be properly passed onto the loved one(s) you wish.
  • You own property. Buying a car, home, or other asset is a sign that you may want to begin drafting an estate plan. If you pass away without a valid will or trust, your property will be dealt with and distributed based on laws for your state, and not in the way you would prefer.
  • You have been married, remarried, or had your first child. One of the main reasons people start to think about their estate plan is after their first child. Parents want the peace of mind that a backup plan has been arranged for underage children in case the unexpected happens. If you have been married or are going through divorce, then this is another strong reason to begin writing a will, trust, and other estate plan documents with guidance from a lawyer. 

Planning for the future involves visiting our own mortality. This can be an odd task to take on, especially without help from a lawyer who is familiar with estate planning law. There are general online programs you can use to create a will or trust, but these are unreliable and don’t guarantee that your estate plan is valid. If you are in need of a lawyer, you may want to speak with one right away, such as an estate planning lawyer.