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Estate planning involves planning for an uncertain future

Planning for the future takes on many forms. Creating a will and deciding who will inherit what assets is just a part of the estate planning process for many Michigan individuals. Perhaps one of the most important parts of this process is planning for what needs to happen and who should make decisions if one is no longer able to make them.

Illness and injury can strike with little warning. One minute an individual is fine and living life to the fullest; the next minute, the individual is involved in a catastrophic accident and can no longer express his or her desires. In addition, many illnesses cause the individual to lose the ability to make decisions. For these reasons, an advanced health care directive is an important part of the estate planning process. With this in place, another individual is tasked with making these decisions in the event that the individual is no longer able to do so.

A living will is another essential part of the estate planning process. Each individual has his or her own desires regarding the steps that should be taken to preserve life. If there is no hope of recovery, one may not wish for extreme measures to be taken. A living will removes the burden of making such decisions from loved ones and informs them as to the individual's actual desires.

Estate planning is more than just creating a will and designating beneficiaries. It also includes planning for an uncertain future life. An experienced estate planning attorney can help guide one through the intricacies of Michigan law as it relates to this process.

Source: Forbes, "The Biggest Estate Planning Mistake People Make", Brad Wiewel, Aug. 16, 2017

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