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Don’t wait too long to begin estate planning and administration

Some people in Illinois hesitate to plan their estates because they don’t like to talk about their own mortality. Others have the best intentions when it comes to executing solid plans but procrastinate because they think they are too young to need a plan or don’t own enough assets to justify the effort. The good news is that the estate planning and administration process can be tailored to meet the immediate needs and long-term goals of an estate owner.

An issue of paramount importance for one person may be insignificant to another. For instance, a single person with no children will not be concerned with designating child guardians. Because the estate planning process can be simple or complex, it often helps to ask to someone with experience to review a prospective plan before signing. There are also state laws and procedures to consider.

One of the main issues that determines where an estate plan is valid is whether the person who signed it was of sound mind at the time. There are many stories regarding heirs or beneficiaries claiming that estate owners were wrongfully influenced or somehow coerced into signing documents that were not in their best interests, or kept a likely heir from inheriting certain assets. Such situations often lead to lengthy court proceedings.

Generally speaking, the sooner one takes care of one’s own estate planning and administration needs, the better. While there is no penalty or repercussion for signing a plan too soon, the results of waiting too long can be disastrous. An experienced Illinois attorney can assist anyone in this state with questions about the estate planning process.