When a Pennsylvania resident dies without an estate plan, it creates certain challenges. It typically delays the distribution of an individual’s assets, and it may, too, raise the chances of inheritance conflicts arising. It may, too, mean that the deceased individual’s estate spends more time in probate, and the probate process is often both timely and costly.
The good news is, Bankrate acknowledges that an estate plan does not need to be complex or highly detailed to prove effective. Instead, many people choose to create effective estate plans that contain just three components: a will, a power of attorney and an advance medical directive.
Having a will put together helps ensure that a decedent’s assets to the people he or she wants to have them. It also gives someone who has minor children a chance to name a guardian over them if he or she dies before those children reach adulthood.
Powers of attorney
Powers of attorney help ensure that someone manages a decedent’s affairs when that individual becomes unable to do so. Some of the more common types of powers of attorney include financial powers of attorney and health care powers of attorney.
Advance medical directives
Advance health care directives give individuals the ability to dictate their wishes as far as their medical care ahead of time, should they suffer incapacitation and become unable to verbalize them. Pennsylvania recognizes several different types, including living will and mental health care declarations.
Dying intestate, or without a will or plan in place, creates otherwise-avoidable hardships for a decedent’s loved ones. Thus, everyone benefits from having an estate plan in place, regardless of estate size.
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