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How estate planning changes throughout the years

Having an estate plan is important for all adults. However, what is needed as part of that plan could vary throughout a person's life. A student or recent college graduate in Georgia might only need durable powers of attorney for health care and finance as well as a simple will. The powers of attorney appoint people to make decisions about an individual's health and manage the person's finances if the estate owner is unable to do so. For a young adult, this might be the parents.

An estate owner may want to purchase life insurance and update their other estate planning documents after getting married or entering a serious relationship. They might also want to review and update beneficiary designations on any accounts that have them. An advance directive or living will outlines the person's medical wishes and can be helpful for whoever is appointed to make medical decisions.

When the person starts a family, it can be important to increase the level of life insurance coverage. It's also important to think about caring for the children if anything happens to the parent. A will can be used to appoint a guardian. The estate owner might also want to consider a trust to avoid probate as well as what kind of legacy to establish. This could be a scholarship or a donation to a church.

An attorney can assist a client in setting up or revising an estate plan. While there are do-it-yourself plans available, errors can be costly for families and could result in the will or other documents being considered invalid. When working with an attorney, the client will get the opportunity to discuss the pros and cons of different options. An attorney may provide advice on the right estate planning vehicles based on the person's family situation.

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