Having a basic California estate plan in place may help you accomplish a number of important goals. For example, it may help you avoid leaving certain areas of your life and legacy in the hands of others. It may, too, help your beneficiaries access what you leave them faster than they would otherwise. However, having a simple estate plan with three key components may help you avoid these and other challenges.
Per Bankrate, an estate plan does not have to be complex or lengthy to be effective. You and your loved ones may benefit by including the following three elements in yours.
If you do nothing else during estate planning, draft a will. A will gives you a say in who inherits what when you die, as opposed to leaving these decisions up to the courts.
A power of attorney
A power of attorney gives someone you designate and trust the legal right to manage specific affairs. The financial power of attorney comes into play if you become incapacitated and are unable to pay your bills or otherwise manage your finances.
A health care directive
Health care directives give you an opportunity to express your wishes if an accident or something else leaves you in need of medical care, but unable to express your thoughts about it. There are different types of advance health care directives, such as living wills and medical powers of attorney.
Having these three estate planning documents in place helps ensure your wishes come to be even if you are unable to voice them. It may, too, give you peace of mind to know that you have plans in place should the unthinkable occur.