Costly but fixable mistakes in estate planning

An estate plan can provide security and peace of mind for Louisiana adults who want to have a say in what happens to their assets and care for their loved ones. However, mistakes in estate planning, even seemingly minor ones, can cause serious complications and issues when it’s time to settle an estate. It’s worthwhile to consider occasional reviews of existing plans to identify and rectify certain problems.

In an estate plan, trusts and/or the terms of the will outline how assets will pass to beneficiaries and heirs. Thorough estate plans should address all valuable and important assets in an estate, including a family home. One thing some older adults fail to consider about their house is how it possibly increased in value over the years and how this should factor into their estate plans. This is especially true for a family home that has been occupied by one family for decades.

Some older parents may decide to give the family home to heirs before their passing, which can ultimately lead to costly taxes and possible complications for the adult children or heirs. If the home is worth substantially more that it was when purchased, this could have significant tax consequences. There are certain estate planning tools that can reduce the chance of surprise capital gains taxes and make it easier to pass such a valuable and important asset to the right hands.

Mistakes in estate planning are often born from the desire to take care of children and loved ones. A careful review of an existing plan can determine if this desire has resulted in decisions that could be detrimental, or the exclusion of certain steps that are important. This is why Louisiana adults will find it helpful to consult with an experienced attorney regarding their goals for their estates.