Working. Paying Bills. Paying taxes. Buying a home. Starting a family. Planning for the future. In the 21st Century vernacular, doing any or all of these things may be classified as “adulting”.
A recent survey shows that Millennials, who are new or relatively new to all of this, are far less likely to be prepared for the future than their older counterparts. Specifically, the survey found only 18 percent of people ages 18 to 34 said they had a last will and testament or other estate planning documents in 2019. By contrast, 37 percent of people ages 24 to 54 said they had some sort of estate planning documents last year and 60 percent of people 55 and older said the same.
Experts frequently stress how important it is for people of all ages to create an estate plan, but it also appears to be unheard of by millennials or younger generations. This concerns us, as estate planners, as the concerns surrounding estate planning are applicable to all generations. Further, experts also stress estate planning is only the first step. Reviewing and updating this planning as needed is also essential. This can be due to changes in one’s own life, as well as, any change in state or federal laws.
In many ways, state law is the primary law that governs estate planning. This means changes in applicable laws could potentially impact:
- Your spouse’s real property rights
- Your ability to leave your belongings to your children and choose their guardians
- Tax planning concerns, including inheritance taxes
- Your legacy planning and result in probate being necessary
When you work with an experienced estate planning attorney, he or she can easily determine if and how new or revised laws could impact your estate plan. He or she can also advise you accordingly and make recommendations.
Changes in federal tax laws can also have a dramatic impact on estate planning. The recent SECURE Act serves as a good example. While you may believe this only impacts older generations, this is not the case. While the majority of the penalty may appear to impact your parents and grandparents, the long-range impact can be felt by younger generations. It is through their legacy planning that your inheritance, or even your family business retirement plans, could be impacted. It is important that first you create an estate plan that reflects your wishes, but that you also work with family members who are close to retirement or have retired to make sure they are working with their estate planning attorney to lessen the impact of changes like these.
If you have questions or concerns about creating your estate plan as a millennial or revising your estate plan, we are here to help. You can schedule a meeting with us by calling our law firm or contacting us through our website, at any time. We look forward to working with you to create a plan that reflects your needs, both now and in the future.