Creating an estate plan is one of the best things you can do to provide for your loved ones after your demise, eliminate family messes, and even reduce your tax liabilities. However, once you’ve gone through the process, you need to do your due diligence and keep your estate planning documents safe.
In this post, we’ll explain the importance of proper estate planning document storage and share four simple and effective ways to maximize security.
The Importance of Keeping Your Estate Planning Documents Safe
Properly storing your estate planning documents reduces the risk of them being stolen, lost, or damaged in a fire, flood, or other disasters. These documents typically include:
1. Last Will
This is a detailed list of instructions for the distribution of your assets following your demise. It also outlines the name of the executor who will make sure heirs and inheritors receive what they owe and that all the debts and taxes are cleared.
2. Financial Power of Attorney
This document designates a person responsible for managing your assets if you become incapacitated. In some cases, the person can take over the responsibility immediately following the signature.
3. Advanced Medical Directive
This document designates doctors, surgeons, and other healthcare professionals to make diagnostic and care decisions if you can’t make them yourself.
4. Trust Documents
Many individuals opt for one or more trusts when creating an estate plan to reduce taxes, get government-aided medical coverage, or accomplish other purposes during the distribution of assets.
As you can see, all of these documents (and more) are extremely important when it comes to ensuring your estate is secure, and your end-of-life wishes are fulfilled. Therefore, the last thing you want is to lose them when needed.
Four Ways to Improve the Security of Your Estate Planning Documents
1. Invest in a Water and Fireproof Safe
Most people store their original documents in file cabinets, wardrobes, or other locations in their homes. Some also opt for a deposit box secured by a third party. However, if you’re adamant about storing documents at home, you should invest in a water and fireproof safe.
This safe type can protect your estate planning documents from theft, fires, floods, and other disasters. However, when using a safe, you need to inform someone about its location and how to access it. You can share this information with a family member, your will executor, or an estate planning lawyer.
2. Make Hard Copies
Fortunately, losing original documents doesn’t mean all is lost. Your family and lawyer can still use hard copies of your will, trust, and other documents as long as they’re attested. So, make sure you have multiple hard copies and store them in different places. You can simply provide a copy to your lawyer and other members of your estate plan.
3. Create a Digital Record
To improve the security of your estate planning documents further, make sure you have a digital copy stored in the cloud, on your device, and on external drives. By keeping an electronic version of your documents, you can access them on demand from anywhere.
4. Inform Select People About Your Documents
Finally, regardless of the method you employ, you need to share where and how you’re storing your documents with close family members, your lawyer, and your executor. Providing them with information will help them access the documents when necessary.
Contact a Nevada Estate Planning Lawyer Right Away!
The experienced Nevada estate planning lawyers at Bourassa Law Group are at your service to help you with the process of storing and protecting your estate planning documents. We can provide multiple different ways to maximize security and enable tracking.
So, give us a call at (800)870-8910 for a free consultation, and let’s get started.
3 Mistakes to Avoid When Creating an Estate Plan
According to a recent survey, 67% of Americans don’t have estate plans. This may not seem like a big deal, but having an estate plan in place helps you manage and distribute your assets after your death, providing your loved ones with financial and emotional support. However, it’s important to work with a professional estate planning attorney to […]
5 Benefits of Hiring a Wills and Estate Lawyer
In this era of information, many people wonder if it is worthwhile to spend money and time on a lawyer to assist them with their wills and estate planning. Online forms are quite alluring due to their low cost, and it is assumed that they must be legitimate if they are being sold. Sadly, your […]
5 Estate Planning Tips to Ensure Your Loved Ones Are Protected Following Your Demise
If you’ve worked hard to establish a solid portfolio of properties and financial assets, you need to act while times are good and build an estate plan to protect your family and loved ones in the future. Having an estate plan is one of the best end-of-life plans you can make and control what happens […]
A Quick Guide to Estate Planning for Blended Families
Estate planning is an important process that every family should undertake to ensure that their assets and properties are protected and transferred smoothly in case of death or incapacity. However, estate planning for blended families is often more complicated than for traditional families since it involves multiple stakeholders, varying relationships, and complex dynamics. A blended […]
A Quick Guide to Quick and Effective End-of-Life Planning
It’s never easy to talk about end-of-life planning. Nonetheless, the talk will go more smoothly if you are prepared. Practically speaking, planning for the end only means reducing the burden you might one day place on your loved ones. Like other aspects of your estate plan, making an end-of-life plan might be difficult, but you can […]
Business Succession Planning in Denver: Preserving Legacies Through Thoughtful Estate Strategies
Business succession planning is challenging due to the multiple variables and risks involved. Various factors jump into the succession planning equation, from estate planning to regulatory compliance management. Denver law firms support businesses by helping them determine the best succession planning practices, keeping the legal aspects in check. If it is time to hand over your […]