Kansas Estate Planning Attorney Explains How Estate Planning is a Matter of Both Life and Death
When many people consider estate planning, they think about a plan that takes effect when a person dies. More and more people realize that there are key documents that they can create through the estate planning process that will provide support and protection for them during their lifetimes. In fact, there is much that a person can do in working with an estate planning attorney to address what they would like to accomplish during their lifetime, in addition to planning for what they want to happen upon the event of their death.
In addition to creating documents that can protect your health and financial interests if you become sick or injured and unable to make critical decisions for yourself, there are things that you can do to protect the things that you create during your lifetime. Whether you are an artist, a business owner, a builder, or you create in some other way, such as through creating memories by spending time with others, we all create things during our lifetime that have an impact on the world. The things and the memories we create are our legacy.
Each person’s legacy is as unique as they are, so each person needs a plan for preserving what they have created during their lifetime. Legacy planning differs from estate planning in that estate planning deals more with assets that a person has accumulated during their lifetime. However, whether you are engaging in estate planning or legacy planning, some of the tools you can use are the same. For example, trusts, both charitable and those that exist primarily to hold and manage assets for family members, are a favorite estate planning tool. They can also be used as legacy planning tools, to support a cause during your lifetime as well as after you pass away, or to preserve your creative works or the business that you have built.
Both estate planning and legacy planning are essential, even though they deal with different types of things and different seasons of life. For example, it would not serve you or your family well to focus exclusively on making a will and carefully describing how your assets will get distributed when you pass away without also giving thought to what you would like to experience during your lifetime. That’s why you would also put careful thought into creating documents that will help your loved ones help you live the life you want to live during an uncertain phase in life that happens to many people, where they are both still alive yet unable to make financial and medical decisions for themselves.
Whatever you call the plans that you are making, know that both legacy planning and estate planning are crucial thought and action processes that you can use to live your best life and be remembered how you wish to be remembered when you pass away.
To learn more about planning for your lifetime and your death, schedule an initial consultation with Wichita attorney J. Joseph Weber. Please call our office at (316) 265-7802, or contact us through our website. We offer meeting times Monday through Friday, between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. We occasionally provide evening or weekend appointments.