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Estate planning mistakes can have negative consequences

When people are going about their daily business, they may not be thinking about estate planning. However, thinking about estate planning is essential for adults of all ages who have assets they’d like to pass on to other people in the event of their death. Several tips can help people in Nevada to avoid some of the most common pitfalls of estate planning.

First, it’s essential that people select appropriate trustees and executors. If executors or trustees are incompetent, fail to focus on details or choose to put their personal interests first, one’s wishes may not be honored. Sometimes, a surviving spouse or the oldest child might not be the best choice to handle one’s estate.

It’s also important to update one’s beneficiary designations for life insurance, annuities and retirement plans. If people get divorced and mistakenly keep their ex-spouses as their beneficiaries, their ex will end up with the assets that they had hoped their children or other individuals would get instead. It’s also wise to update this information after a key beneficiary dies, a person experiences major changes in his or her net worth or any applicable tax laws change. It’s worth noting that beneficiary designations trump what a person’s will says.

In addition, it’s important to generally tell other people about one’s plans. This keeps loved ones from being surprised about the way in which assets are to be distributed and thus can prevent estate disputes. Properly accomplished estate planning can help Nevada residents to make sure that their assets are protected posthumously and that their loved ones are taken care of in the manner that was intended.

Source:, "Key Estate Planning Mistakes You Need to Avoid", Bob Carlson, July 24, 2014

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