Organization can often make any task easier. You may enjoy having everything neat and in order, but you may not yet have taken an important organizational step that could help you and your family later: estate planning. You and many other Louisiana residents may not consider creating an estate plan as an organizational effort, but really, having your affairs in order through legally binding documents can go a long way in ensuring that certain actions go smoothly.
If you want to start on your plan but do not feel entirely confident in where to start, that is not a problem. Many people put off estate planning because they believe the process will be overwhelming. Fortunately, you can start organizing your affairs before you even begin dealing with paperwork.
Put your organizational skills to work
If you do enjoy organizing, this first step may seem like a breeze to you. To get started, you may find it helpful to create an inventory of your assets. You can essentially go through your personal items, financial accounts, investments, insurance policies and other similar assets and make a list of what you have. During this time, you may find that you have assets you no longer want or some that you know you want a specific person to have later. Write those thoughts down.
While making your inventory, it may also be a smart time to organize the information associated with certain accounts or assets. For instance, you may need to provide account numbers, the names and contact information for financial institutions, passwords for online accounts, and other information. You may also want to organize any titles, deeds or other ownership documents.
Creating legal documents
After creating your inventory, you can move on to creating your will and, possibly, a trust. Your will can detail certain wishes for property distribution after your passing, and it can also allow you to name a person as the executor of your estate. If you want to have control over how your beneficiaries use their bequests, creating a trust can allow you to leave instructions on how they can use the assets.
Once you get your estate planning documents created, you can once again use your organizational skills to ensure that they stay in a safe place and that your loved ones know where to access them when needed.