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End-of-life decisions benefit from a team approach

Most Nevada residents aren't rushing to perform estate-planning duties, and reticence in such matters is understandable. The creation of wills, trusts and other estate-related items causes individuals to consider things that can seem depressing. On the other hand, failing to plan for end-of-life needs or organize assets for distribution to loved ones can result in complex probate issues and stress for those same loved ones.

According to experts, estate planning isn't just about creating a single will and letting it ride. Wills, trusts and legal organization record your intentions, set actions in motion and provide some boundaries for the execution of the estate. In some cases, those are only the beginning of the process. There may be a need for succession planning, training or wealth management, among other things.

One expert compares the estate planning and execution process to a football game. While an estate or probate attorney can begin each play through legal means - a metaphorical tossing of the ball - there have to be trusted individuals to carry out the plans before anyone can reach the in zone. Anyone familiar with organized sports knows that it takes time to build a team, so it's important to begin estate planning, including the creation of a will, as early as possible.

Starting early lets you identify trusted individuals in your family and business, collaborate with individuals about the best way to pass on a legacy and train individuals for business succession. Discussions about end-of-life decisions can be awkward, but avoiding them does nothing to build your team. Taking the time for thoughtful discussion and legal planning now provides peach of mind for the future of yourself, your family and your legacy.

Source: Nevada Business, "A Primer on Estate Planning: Be Prepared" Normal Bell, Dec. 02, 2013

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