Estate Planning, in many ways is more important for women than men. Women on average live 5 years longer than men, earn less over their lifetimes, are the primary caretakers of children and aging parents and are the ones who will likely have the final say in how assets are spent or distributed.
Longer lifespans make it more important for women to plan properly to ensure they do not outlive their savings. It is imperative that women begin saving for retirement when they are young. Early contributions to a retirement account will compound over time and provide the resources women will need to live comfortably as they age. A financial advisor can help you create a roadmap for a secure retirement. Working with an estate planning attorney can help protect those assets from creditors and nursing home costs and allow you to leave a legacy for loved ones.
Women’s lives tend to be more circuitous than men. It is usually women who off-ramp to raise children or care for aging parents. Women need to consider this and plan accordingly to make up for lost time in the workforce.
Because women who are married usually outlive their husbands, they get the final say in how the family assets are spent or passed on. It is important for women to be involved in the process throughout their lives so they will be able to make informed decisions. Make sure you know balances, account numbers and how to access this information as well as the location of important documents like titles and deeds. Get organized!
It is important for single women to be definitive about what they want to do with their estate by creating an estate plan so family members and/or friends will have the necessary guidance to carry out their wishes.
Married or single, every woman should create a Health Care Proxy and Durable Financial Power of Attorney. A Health Care Proxy allows you to name someone to make medical decisions for you should you be unable to. A Durable Power of Attorney allows someone to make financial decisions if you become ill or incapacitated. Without these tools in place, loved ones will have to expend time and money getting permission from a court.
It is critical to seek the advice of an attorney who understands the importance of estate planning from a women’s perspective. Contact Attorney Tracy A. Loignon for a free consultation.
Live for Today….but Plan for Tomorrow
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.