If you have no children, your estate planning will be different than if you did have them.
There are two significant differences:
Whom to leave assets to
Many people leave their assets to their children. But without children, this question becomes more difficult.
Some leave their assets to their parents. But many times, the parents are both deceased by the time a person does their MA estate planning using a will or trust.
More often, their siblings are living. But sometimes a sibling does not have a great relationship with the MA resident doing their estate planning. Or, the sibling has many more assets than you.
Sometimes a sibling has an addiction. Maybe one of several siblings has died before you, and you don't have much contact with those particular nieces or nephews.
Some people decide in their MA estate planning to leave assets to cousins, or maybe children of cousins.
Other people think hard about which charity or charities they feel deserving of support. Every year many charities, both Massachusetts based or national in scope, receive many assets from those leaving no children and no relatives that need the money.
Who do you put in charge of your estate
Another issue frequently faced by those who have no children, and those without adult children as well is there's no apparent person to put in charge of your affairs after your passing. Or incapacity if that occurs.
Many times professionals such as accountants or attorneys would be good choices because they are detailed minded and have a feel for issues and numbers.
But the malpractice insurance carriers for these professionals do not approve of coverage for the post-death work involved as a MA personal representative, executor, or trustee.
So, you likely will need to find a relative, frequently a sibling, to take over for you if the need arises.
Sometimes a person will open an account currently with a financial institution that can act as the personal representative or executor or trustee.
But such institutions will commonly require a large amount of money to be placed into management now by the estate planning individual. And a minimum account size of $1 million to start that relationship is commonly encountered.
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If you have estate planning questions or concerns, or would like to get started creating your estate plan, contact the experienced Lexington, Massachusetts estate planning attorneys at MA Wills and Trusts at 781 863-8606 to schedule your consultation. Or contact us at Contact