People don't understand what their estates consist of. A lot of times, someone comes in here and says, ‘You know what, I really don't have a lot of money. I have a house; I have a savings account, a checking account. That's really all I have.' Well, my question is, ‘Do you have a life insurance policy?' ‘Well, yeah I have a life insurance policy, but it's not mine, I don't get to benefit from it, it's for my husband, my wife, my kids when I die.'
People need to really understand what their estates consist of. It consists of any life insurance policy that you may have, any 401k, any IRA, any business interests that you may have, no matter how small. Your house, any vacation homes, your savings accounts, checking accounts, stocks, bonds. When someone really sits down and writes a list of all of those things and how much they have, people are surprised at what their estate truly consists of and how much money there is.
Want more information? Print our Estate Planning Checklist. This list will enable you to see what your assets are and will be helpful to you when speaking with an estate planning attorney to determine what estate plan is best for your particular situation.