This holiday season, you likely have lots of time planned with family, friends and loved ones, whether around the dinner table or at holiday parties. During this time of cheer and festivity, estate planning may be the last thing on your mind—but should it be?
While the holiday season is all about giving and sharing time with loved ones, it’s also a good time to reevaluate your current estate plan (or draft your very first one) in an effort to protect them should something ever happen to you. In today’s blog, we are looking at a few reasons why this holiday season may be the best time yet to work on your estate plan.
Changes in relationships
It’s an unfortunate but often very real part of life—relationships change, couples break apart, people change and unexpected events do happen. It’s also true that many of these big life changes become apparent to you during the holiday season!
While you want to spend time dealing with big life changes among family and friends this holiday season, you also want to use this time to reevaluate your current estate plan. Do changes in the lives or relationships of loved ones—perhaps of those you have appointed with specific tasks or duties in your will—affect the role you want them to play in your life? It may be a hard question to answer, but doing so will allow you to make confident, more assured decisions in your estate plan.
Gifts and changes to your estate
Substantial changes to your estate often warrant a reconsideration of your plan, since large additions (or subtractions) of your money may likely affect how you want to allot it. If you come into a large sum of money this holiday season in the form of a gift or inheritance, or if you’re on the other side of such an exchange, you may want to look back at your estate plan and refigure your numbers.
End of year reflections
The holiday season coincides with the end of the year, a time when many of us reflect on the year that’s past and rethink life choices, our outlooks, and—of course—what we want our impact to be. If this happens to you this holiday season, you should absolutely revisit your estate plan (or get started on one) to account for changes in life plans, provisions for unexpected events and where you want to leave your legacy.
A chance to ask the important questions
Finally, the holiday season offers us the unique chance to be around family members and loved ones we don’t get to see throughout the year. While you may be afraid that mentioning your estate plan or medical decisions during the holiday season may put a damper on things, rest assured that this is actually one of the best things you can do for your family. Ask people the questions you need to know—will they serve in the role you appointed them? Are they comfortable taking on the responsibilities (or gifts) you leave them in your estate plan, should anything happen? While it may seem difficult to talk about at first, doing so can actually make the rest of the holiday season a much lighter and more enjoyable experience.
If you decide during the holidays that you need to design or rethink an estate plan, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us! Call our office today at 386-868-3083 to get the answers to your important estate planning questions.
We would like to wish you and your family a very happy and healthy holiday season!