Act like the Smart Stars-Estate Planning is Now for All of Us, Young or Old

What do Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, Tupac Shakur, Prince, and probably YOU have in common? None of them had a will — which is an essential part of protecting your choices and assets also known as estate planning. Odd for wealthy people, but do the rest of us need to worry about estate planning? Yes, definitely yes.

Estate planning isn’t just planning for what to do with family yachts and homes in the Hamptons. Rich or poor, young or old, everyone needs to do estate planning. If you don’t, you lose control of your choices when you can’t make them for yourself. For example, if you get into an accident can can’t tell people who can make healthcare decisions or pay bills or control your digital assets, your family would have to hire lawyers to go before a judge. It can cost thousands of dollars and precious time would be lost to get access to funds and make critical health-related decisions.

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Now with the introduction of Gentreo, www.gentreo.com, estate planning is simple, understandable, quick to do and easy to share. Within minutes, Gentreo guides you easily through establishing your choices. Plus, you can quickly change or update your choices as your situation or laws change. Best of all, the Gentreo Digital Vault lets you store and share your plan with the people you choose. In the event of an emergency, your family knows what your choices are, and they have easy access to them.

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Estate planning lets you make choices about your own health decisions when you can’t. The document that does this is called a health care proxy. Everyone over 18 years old should have one, and with Gentreo, it’s easy to understand, create and share. Having a health care proxy lessens the emotional stress of your family if an emergency does occur. No one has to guess what you would want to happen; family members don’t have to fight over what they think you would want, and they avoid having to go to court to make decisions for you.

Estate planning is also making sure someone you trust can make financial decisions on your behalf. A power of attorney lets you choose someone to make financial decisions for you like paying your rent or mortgage or as complex as selling property to pay for your care. A power of attorney also sets who can control things like your digital assets (your social media accounts, blogs, photos, etc.). Again, if you don’t have these essential documents in place, your loved ones must get a lawyer and go to court to get permission to make decisions on your behalf. This costs time, money, and often tears families apart.

Another crucial part of estate planning is preparing a will. Sounds scary, but it’s not. A will sets what happens to everything you own after your death. Without one, the state typically claims possession of your estate and the courts must decide what to do with it. Estate planning eliminates haggling for your possessions between your family members and lets you decide what you want.

Recently, there was a situation involving a 25-year-old man who had been thrown out of his house by his stepmother when he was only 17-years-old. The man had no other family but had a fiance who he was planning on marrying. The man struggled for years. Eventually, he went on from being homeless and forced to live in his car to put himself through college which led to a good job and finding the love of his life. He had told his fiancé numerous times how he could never forgive his stepfamily and would never want anything to do with them again. Unfortunately, the man was involved in a motor vehicle accident and died. Because he didn’t have a will, his finance got nothing, and his next of kin, his stepbrother, received everything. If he had done estate planning, he could have provided for his fiance and let her control everything. Estate planning is for all of us, not just the wealthy.

Estate planning is for all of us. In the past, Americans spent thousands of dollars to create documents like wills, trusts, and more, but thanks to Gentreo, the average person can now protect their choices and assets affordably, quickly and safely. So, listen to and love the music of Prince, Amy Winehouse, Aretha Franklin, and Tupac Shakur, but learn from them too and protect yourself and your loved ones. Visit Gentreo, www.gentreo.com, to learn more today.

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