You have worked long and hard for many years and have likely accumulated many assets. While you are enjoying your life, you need to take steps to protect your wealth. You need to save money for retirement and unexpected expenses that could occur as you age. There are some ways to ensure that you keep your assets safe as you age. An experienced estate planning attorney will help you manage your wealth to achieve your goals.
Know Your Priorities
One of the first steps you can take to protect your assets is to determine your priorities. You will want to ensure that you spread your wealth amongst various investments. In addition, you need to have some cash resources available for your needs. You likely have some savings in a retirement fund or IRA. You also may have an investment portfolio and a savings account. Then, you have assets and property that you can liquidate if necessary. You want to know that you have a safe place to live, money for food and clothing, and resources for all your ongoing needs.
Access to Your Assets
One of the most important aspects of protecting your assets is to prevent others from accessing them. At the same time, you may need a loved one to be able to handle your financial matters if you are unable to do so. Limit access to your assets by allowing a specific, trusted person to assist you with your financial needs. Do not allow strangers or others to take care of your bills, or you could become the victim of theft. For example, if you allow a person, such as a nursing home worker or assistant, to write your checks or pay your bills, you could find out that they are not trustworthy.
Select a Person to Handle Your Finances
Power of attorney is a good option for many people. Power of attorney is a legal designation that allows a person you choose to access and handle your finances if you become incapacitated. The benefit of this option is that you assign a person you trust, such as an adult child or trusted friend, to handle your needs. You can allow this person the ability to write checks, pay bills, and handle all of your financial decisions on your behalf. Power of attorney can be general, limited, or special. In addition, you can establish a trust that will help protect your assets.
Create an Estate Plan
An estate plan is an ideal way to plan ahead for your needs as you age. An estate plan may contain a variety of documents, including such things as a will, trust, power of attorney, and healthcare directive. A comprehensive estate plan will help you maintain proper control of your assets and protect them as you age. The plan will account for issues that could arise, such as what to do under certain healthcare emergencies and how to take care of your finances if you become incapacitated. An experienced estate planning attorney will help you create a plan that works best for your needs.
Protecting your assets is an important concern, but one that does not have to cause you sleepless nights. Contact our legal team at Moen Sheehan Meyer, Ltd. at (608) 784-8310 or email us for a consultation.