5 Reasons Why Making A Will Is An Important Part of Financial Planning
Making a will not only protects your family, but it can also reduce future stress for your loved ones. Here are 5 reasons why you should make a will.
- You Get To Decide Who Receives Your Belongings
- You Can Make An Emergency Plan For Your Dependents
- You’ll Ensure Your Important Relationships Aren’t Ignored
- You’re Protecting Your Finances, Health, And Personal Decisions
- You’ll Know Your Loved Ones Are Protected In The Event Of An Emergency
Prepared by Willful for Emma
Most of us agree that financial planning is a crucial part of adulthood. However, most of the time when we think financial planning, our minds go straight to savings and investments. One surprisingly important part of your financial toolkit is actually estate planning.
What’s estate planning? Well, estate planning is the process of making end-of-life arrangements for your assets and loved ones — including making your will and power of attorney documents. In fact, over 57% of Canadians and over 90% of millennials don’t have a will. While, it can be scary, death is an inevitable part of life and being prepared is one of the best ways to bring you and your loved ones some peace of mind.
Here are 5 reasons why you should make estate planning part of your financial plan:
#1 You Get To Decide Who Receives Your Belongings
Your will is a legally-binding document that lets you determine how you’d like to divide your estate (including any assets of financial value and debts) when you pass away. Through your will, you’re able to allocate any special gifts of monetary or sentimental value such as property, jewellery, or even books!
#2 You Can Make An Emergency Plan For Your Dependents
No one *wants* to think about a world where children are left without their parents, but making a will is an important step to ensuring your children are cared for in the event of an unexpected emergency. Your will tells your loved ones and the courts who you’ve entrusted to provide care and support for your child or children.
It is not an easy decision, but we promise you’ll feel better knowing that you have a written plan in place for your children in the event of your death.
#3 You’ll Ensure Your Important Relationships Aren’t Ignored
If you die without a will, you are considered to have died “intestate.” This means that the courts will use your province’s' default laws to distribute your estate. Unfortunately, the provincial formulas often do not account for your important relationships and can be very different from what you would have actually wanted.
It's important to understand that when it comes to intestacy, common law spouses are not treated the same as legally-married spouses. In many cases common law partners and any other relationships may be left vulnerable if you die without a will.
#4 You’re Protecting Your Finances, Health, And Personal Decisions
While it’s important to prepare for your unexpected death, it’s just as important to think about what would happen if you experienced an accident or a personal medical emergency. By making a power of attorney document, you will designate someone to make decisions about your property, finances, personal life, and medical care in the event of an emergency if you are unable to do so yourself. This can include paying your bills, maintaining your property, or making decisions related to your healthcare. You can also outline your wishes within your documents.
Think of your POA as a form of disability insurance (it takes care of you while you’re alive) and your will as a form of life insurance (it takes care of your loved ones after you pass away).
#5 You’ll Know Your Loved Ones Are Protected In The Event Of An Emergency
Making a will not only protects your family, but it can also reduce future stress for your loved ones after your death. Having a legal will makes the probate process simpler, making it easier for your family to wrap up your affairs. In addition, it can minimize the chances of any arguments that may arise around what you would have wanted.
Life is full of the unexpected and having an up-to-date estate plan can bring some extra peace of mind knowing that your family is protected. The same way we purchase life insurance to help protect us against the unexpected, your will and power of attorney documents ensures that there is a plan in place for your family in the event of an emergency.
Fortunately, making your will and power of attorney documents are easier than ever with online estate planning platforms like Willful. You can protect your family and bring yourself extra peace of mind in as little as 20 minutes from the comfort of your own home. Just remember, that regardless how you decide to make your will — any will is better than no will at all!