For many Maryland residents, confronting mortality can be exceedingly difficult, and these thoughts are difficult enough to make them want to avoid estate planning. However, making plans for what happens after death is vital if a person wants any say in what happens to his or her property in the future. If a will has validly prepared and the person dies, state intestacy law will govern who gets what without any regard to the distribution preferences of the decedent.
To start the estate planning process, a power of attorney and an advance directive should be created. These processes will ensure that a trusted person can make decisions in the event of incapacity. Advance directives state preferences in respect to life support and other forms of complex medical care.
Drafting a will is a necessary part of estate planning. Very basic wills can be made using online legal document services, but having it professionally reviewed is preferable. For some people, creating a trust is advisable, as it can reduce estate taxes and streamline some aspects of the probate process. Creating a trust costs more than creating a will, but it can be well worth it for people who need it. Some people forget the necessity of updating a will, but reviewing and making necessary changes on an annual basis can help eliminate confusion in regards to distribution of property after death.
Estate planning can sometimes be done on one's own, but enlisting the help of an attorney is often advisable. An attorney with experience in wills and estate planning may be able to provide valuable advice and help to take some of the confusion out of developing an estate plan.