Don't be that person who passes away without providing for your family. Your death will be hard enough on an emotional level, it doesn't have to be financially, procedurally, and legally burdensome as well. Put all the necessary pieces in place to provide a smooth transition for your family to heal and move forward.
The basic elements you may need from an estate planning attorney include the following:
Other elements of a complete plan may include retirement planning, life insurance, and long term care insurance. You should establish good ongoing relationships with your selected professionals who can work together to make sure your plan makes sense for your situation. These professionals are likely to include an attorney, accountant, financial adviser and insurance professional.
In addition, it's a great idea to bring your teenage or adult children into the conversation to let them know what to expect. Some issues you should discuss include who has decision-making power, what your wishes are regarding health care, what type of living situation you would like once you can no longer live independently, and what kind of legacy you would like to leave behind. Putting your estate planning in place is essentially providing your family with a roadmap for when you have an emergency or for your inevitable death.