Some people don't like to talk about their own mortality, and they may avoid the topic as best they can. Others understand that estate planning is a valuable tool that can be be used to protect their assets, as well as make known their final wishes and instructions regarding their property, assets, medical care and financial issues. There are several common mistakes that many Louisiana residents (and others throughout the nation) make, however, that are to be avoided whenever possible.
The top most error many estate owners make is not executing any type of written estate plan. Some think that merely sharing their thoughts on certain estate topics (such as who should inherit their money, house, property, business, etc.) is sufficient. This is hardly ever the case, since the probate court makes such decisions when a person dies without having signed a final will and testament.
Some people have estate plans in place but forget to make changes and update them when necessary. This can really cause problems down the line, such as when divorces, deaths, births or remarriages occur. In fact, if a person enlists the help of an attorney when writing an estate plan, he or she can reconnect with that person for periodic reviews and updates as needed.
There are several other mistakes that can be quite counterproductive to the estate planning process. These include failure to explore tax minimization strategies, choosing someone not well-suited as an executor or administrator of an estate, and putting a child's name on a house deed rather than giving the house to the child as an inheritance. A Louisiana estate planning attorney can help those in this state who wish to avoid such mistakes and develop thorough, solid estate plans to protect their interests and provide for their loved ones.
Source: FindLaw, "Ten Common Estate Planning Mistakes to Avoid", Accessed on Aug. 2, 2017