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Common Misconceptions About Estate Planning

Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC Sept. 21, 2023

Estate planning with related word cloud on blackboardEven though most people understand the concept of estate planning, there are many misconceptions as to what creating an estate plan entails. To make things worse, there is also plenty of misinformation floating around the internet.  

Steven L. Rotenberg understands how detrimental those misconceptions about estate planning can be. Many of those myths prevent people from taking the necessary steps to protect their legacy and their loved ones. If you want to understand what can and cannot be accomplished through estate planning, schedule a consultation with attorney Steven L. Rotenberg. The attorney has two offices in Michigan, one in Farmington Hills and another one in Monroe, but also serves clients in Pontiac, Mount Clemens, and throughout the metro Detroit area.  

Common Estate Planning Myths

With the abundance of information online, it is quite easy to get confused and overwhelmed when trying to make sense of estate planning. Below are some of the most common misconceptions many people have when it comes to creating an estate plan:  

“I am too young to think about estate planning” 

There is no such thing as being “too young” or “too healthy” when it comes to planning for your future. Life can be unpredictable. Just because you are young and in good health does not mean nothing can happen to you tomorrow or a year from now. Having a well-structured estate plan allows you to have peace of mind simply knowing that you have a plan in place if anything unexpected happens.  

“I do not have that many assets to create an estate plan” 

Many people are under the impression that they do not need an estate plan until they accumulate a certain amount of wealth. In reality, you do not need to be wealthy to benefit from estate planning. Even someone with a relatively small estate should have an estate plan in place to ensure that their assets are distributed to their intended beneficiaries in a timely manner and their loved ones are taken care of. Estate planning is also important to ensure that your health and your finances have the protection they need in the event of incapacity.  

“My family members already know my wishes so I don’t need an estate plan”  

While it is good to verbally communicate your wishes to your loved ones, they should be written down and properly documented to ensure that your wishes are honored after your death. This can reduce potential conflict between the family members and make the estate administration process more straightforward.  

“There will be no probate if I have the Last Will and Testament” 

One of the reasons people create an estate plan is to avoid probate, which is known for being lengthy and costly. However, contrary to popular belief, just having the Last Will and Testament alone is usually not enough to avoid the probate process. That is not to say, however, that a will is not a crucial document as part of your estate plan. If your goal is to avoid the time-consuming and expensive probate process, you it is vital to seek the assistance of an attorney to explore your options.  

“I can use online tools to create an estate plan” 

While you can use online tools and templates to create an estate plan because it seems convenient and cost-effective, do not expect it to be customized to your situation. Those DIY document forms and templates provide a “one-size-fits-all” solution to estate planning, which means they do not take into account your unique circumstances and special wishes, not to mention that they may not be compliant with the laws of your state.  

“I do not need an attorney” 

When working with an attorney, you can make sure that you create an estate plan tailored to your specific needs and goals. An experienced attorney will help you with preparing and drafting the necessary documents to ensure that they are valid and created in accordance with applicable state laws.  

Dispel Estate Planning Myths With Our Support

If you want to understand more about how the estate planning process works or need assistance with creating a customized and comprehensive plan, reach out to Steven L. Rotenberg, PLLC. Attorney Steven L. Rotenberg can give you personalized advice regarding estate planning so you can feel confident and informed when creating a plan for your future. Contact the attorney today to schedule a case evaluation and discuss your estate planning needs.