The pandemic has caused huge disruption to life for everyone and surveys have shown that many people have delayed making many important decisions, includ-ing estate planning. While it is understandable that some financial planning would take a backseat during such a worrying and turbulent time, estate planning is not something that should be delayed and should be prioritised.
The Importance of Estate Planning
Nobody likes to think about when they will not be around, but it is vital that you plan for this time so that your family will be taken care of once you die. The pandemic has proven that the unexpected can happen and many people have sadly lost their life at a young age, so if anything, the pandemic should encour-age young families to take action to get their affairs in order. It is unlikely that anything will happen to you in the near future, but knowing that your affairs are in order will provide peace of mind which is hugely important especially in times like these.
Making the Process Easier For Family
You do not need to be wealthy or have many assets for estate planning as this will include everything that you have, including your home, car, bank accounts and pension. Without an estate plan, your estate will have to go through probate which could be a lengthy, stressful and upsetting process for your family.
Speak to Specialists
A survey found that 61% of financial advisers have clients that have delayed fi-nancial planning because of the pandemic, including putting off their estate plan-ning. You will want to maximise the outcome for your loved ones once you pass, so it is smart to start speaking with financial estate planning specialists as soon as possible. In addition to speaking to specialists, it is also important to involve loved ones in discussions - communication is key in difficult situations such as this.
Other key steps to take for estate planning include making a will, naming a guardian for your children and updating your beneficiaries. If you have not al-ready, it is smart to take out life insurance which would ensure that there are funds available for the other parent if either parent passed away. Term life in-surance has affordable premiums and will provide enough coverage until your children are able to be financially independent themselves. You may also want to consider setting up a trust which would allow you to specify how your assets should be used for your children before they turn 18.
It is easy to see why people would delay making financial decisions during the pandemic, but estate planning is something that should not be delayed and the pandemic should actually encourage people to take action. Estate planning is never easy and can be upsetting, but ultimately it is an incredibly important pro-cess to go through to make sure that your family will be looked after.