Parents or those caring for minor dependents have many difficult decisions to make that will affect their children's future. Among these are clarifying who should care for minor children should something happen to the parents. It is important that parents carefully consider this decision, as well as understand the Delaware law standards related to estate planning and guardianship.
Many Delaware residents may have made a New Year's resolution to get their affairs in order this year. This includes estate planning in order to ensure that surviving family members are provided for in the event of death. When it comes to making decisions regarding how that plan will be structured, a trust may be a consideration.
Delaware residents who wish to "get their affairs in order" need to take certain steps to ensure that their wishes are followed. Estate planning in and of itself does help, but if mistakes are made, it could undo the efforts. In order to help ensure that everything goes according to plan when the time comes, it may help to keep the following in mind.
Considering the high number of Delaware couples who divorce, a couple may decide that marriage is not for them. They believe that a document will not change the nature of their relationship, so why bother. That may be the case for a marriage license, but when it comes to estate planning, those documents could make all the difference.
Are you a Delaware resident and a legal adult? Then the odds are that you need an estate plan. Even if your career is still getting off the ground or you are right in the middle of it, you could benefit from estate planning. If you are reaching or are at retirement age, you can also benefit from putting your wishes in writing.
Delaware's young couples who are just beginning their parental journey probably spend most of their time focused on the present and the near future. Raising young children takes a great deal of commitment, and life can be hectic at times. Because of this, they may not have their minds on the possibility of not being there for their children and fail to take the time to consider estate planning.
Many Delaware residents take steps to provide for their spouses, children and even charities after their deaths. However, there is someone else who needs protection and provision as well -- the family pet. Estate planning can provide for the fate of a pet after death.
How often do Delaware residents hear that they should "get their affairs in order" before it is too late? Even so, a large percentage of the population of the state -- and the country for that matter -- delays engaging in any estate planning. The reasons for this are numerous and vary from individual to individual, but failing to have some sort of estate plan in place often ends the same way -- with surviving family members potentially losing out on an inheritance because they end up spending valuable assets from the estate going through the courts.
Many special needs children become special needs adults. For the Delaware parents of such an adult, planning for his or her physical and financial security is a priority. That planning needs to extend beyond the lives of the parents, which means that estate planning also becomes a top priority.
More than a fear of dying, many Delaware residents fear that they will reach a point in their lives when they will not be able to make sound decisions for themselves. They may wonder what will happen if an injury or illness causes them to be incapacitated. Fortunately, estate planning can help prepare for an uncertain future.