If you made it through your working years without creating an estate plan, you certainly are not alone. In fact, almost 70% of Americans do not even have a will, let alone a comprehensive estate plan. Fortunately, it is almost never too late to develop one.
Comprehensive estate planning not only allows you to distribute your assets after your death but also gives you some control over medical procedures and end-of-life care. Even if you are in your golden years or have a life-threatening injury or illness, there is probably still time to plan your estate.
When is it too late?
Really, the only time it is too late to draft an estate plan is when you are dead. On the other hand, if you lack the capacity to create a legally enforceable estate plan, you may have few options. Consequently, if you fear you may be in physical or mental decline, you may want to start your estate plan as soon as possible.
How do you start?
From a last will and testament to an advance directive, there are many valuable estate planning tools you may want to use to achieve peace of mind. If you have a serious illness or injury, creating a medical power of attorney first may make sense. Of course, if you have some idea of how you want to dispose of your assets, writing a basic will may not take long.
You should not let your lack of an estate plan dissuade you from taking steps to protect yourself, your loved ones and your wealth. Ultimately, if you still have your mental faculties, you probably also still have plenty of time to put your affairs in order.