Purpose of Estate Planning – Part 1

Estate Planning is About Choice

My grocery store has over a dozen different peanut butter selections.  All have nearly the same ingredients peanuts, salt, and a few other things thrown in.  Why have so many different selections?  The answer is Choice.  Customers want the ability to choose between different brands, flavors or textures.

Estate planning is also about choice.  It is having the ability the ability to choose how to dispose of your life’s work.  Everyone has an estate plan, that plan is the Virginia Intestate Statute.  If you die without a will or trust, then the Virginia Intestate Statute will determine how your estate will be divided and distributed to your heirs.

Despite our desire for choice in the grocery aisle, only about 45% of adults have a will.  The majority of adults, therefore, have failed to exercise their right to choose.  Your failure to choose can cause serious problems including financial hardship for your surviving heirs and can strain relations among family members.

Over the next few weeks, we will focus on the estate planning process.  This is general information designed to educate you on the primary estate planning tools.  Every situation is different and this blog is not a substitute for a consultation with an estate planning attorney.  As you read our Estate Planning Blog series, please keep the following in mind:

A proper estate plan should:

  1. Allow you the ability to choose how to dispose of your assets;

  2. Minimize the risk of conflict among your surviving heirs; and

  3. Protect your estate from taxes or other government intrusions.

If you need help with an estate planning in Chesterfield, Colonial Heights, Dinwiddie, Hopewell, Petersburg, Prince George, or Sussex. Give us a call at (804) 668-5327 or email us at Contact@paulperduelaw.com to schedule a consultation.