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Key individuals in estate planning

Over the years, one begins to realize that life does not go on indefinitely. The simple fact is that while each Michigan resident would like to think that he or she has plenty of time left, no one really knows for certain. As such, before it is too late, it is important to make sure that loved ones are taken care of through the estate planning process.

One important part of estate planning is naming an executor. This is the individual who will make sure that all assets are accounted for and be responsible for seeing that they are dispersed according to one's will. Although this individual is often a family member or close friend, there are times when it may be better to hire someone with knowledge of the individual's estate to act in this capacity.

Another key part of estate planning is to identify someone to act as guardian for minor children. If both parents die, who will be responsible for the care and well-being of the children? Typically, parents have specific values and ideals that they want their children exposed to. These are important considerations when choosing a guardian.

Finally, it is possible that the individual will need someone to act as a power of attorney prior to death. If the Michigan resident is unable to make decisions for him or herself, or becomes incapacitated, the power of attorney allows a designated individual to act on behalf of the person granting the power. Estate planning is a necessary part of planning for one's future and the care of loved ones. An experienced estate planning attorney can assist in making sure that all necessary aspects are considered.

Source: morningstar.com, "Tackle Estate-Planning Basics", Christine Benz, Oct. 12, 2017

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