Going Work Optional: What’s It All Worth?

Walking along a path…

With my family reminds me of how important it is to treasure these special moments in life. You may have experienced the same thing whether it’s a family vacation or simply having dinner together at home or at a restaurant. Multiple generations being together and celebrating your financial independence and the time afforded to you because of achieving the work optional goal.

However, what’s it all worth if your estate is not in order and the unexpected should occur, such as illness or death. Making sure you address your “blind spots” when being work optional or financially independent can be the difference between passing on your legacy and values intact or otherwise.

Here are some important considerations when getting your “financial house” in order. Have you and your partner integrated a will into your overall estate plan? Perhaps a trust would be an optimal path. A will can provide guidance as to where and who will receive your assets upon death. However, without a trust, the estate will still be subject to probate. A trust will keep your affairs private and facilitate the transition
of your assets free from probate. With regards to trusts, if you are financially independent, you may have a larger amount of assets to protect from Estate Death Taxes. If so, is the right language integrated into the trust to help mitigate estate death taxes and provide for future generations?

Furthermore, when establishing a trust, you will have to decide as to who will be a successor trustee in the event of death or incapacity. Typically, this will be a family member. However, an additional consideration would be to have a third party (neutral) or corporate trustee become the successor trustee. Being a trustee is time consuming and demanding. Having a corporate trustee can help alleviate the work bestowed on a family member.

Other key components to an effective estate plan are having in place a Durable Power of Attorney and a Health Care Directive. Both documents will help identify who will step into your place to make key decisions on financial and health care concerns. Steps you can take today to help protect your assets include reviewing your beneficiaries on retirement accounts and insurance policies. Also, if you have a trust already established, be sure to verify the assets that are to be in the trust are titled to the name of the trust. Enjoying the work optional lifestyle is truly an achievement. Time and health are twothings that are afforded to you during this phase of your life. Protect the assets and work you have put into getting to this point should the unexpected happen. Visiting with your attorney to help organize your
wishes is part of a journey to completing your financial independence.

Enjoying the work optional lifestyle is truly an achievement.

Are you there yet?

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