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Including digital assets in an estate plan

People in Nevada spend more time online than ever before, and an increasing portion of their financial lives are also conducted over the internet. However, many individuals do not think about digital assets when they begin to consider planning for the future. When people make a will, they think about their real estate, jewelry, bank accounts or investment funds, but they may not consider the digital elements of their assets. However, this is an increasingly important part of a modern estate plan that can affect how effectively assets transfer to beneficiaries after death.

Aretha Franklin's handwritten wills submitted to court

People in Nevada could learn from the estate planning woes currently being experienced by the family of the late Aretha Franklin. Initially, reports were that the singer, who died in 2018, did not have a will. Since then, three different wills have been found. All three wills were handwritten, and all have been submitted to the court. It is unclear whether the court will consider any of them valid.

Mistakes to avoid when creating an estate plan

While estate planning is important for all adults in Nevada, it is critical to do so properly. A common mistake that people make is to leave assets directly to minors. A better idea is to leave the asset to a trust that a minor child or grandchild is the beneficiary of. If a trust is created, it needs to be funded before its creator passes on. Otherwise, assets that were intended for the trust may still need to go though probate.

Estate plans cover a multitude of wishes

In Las Vegas, Nevada, the distribution of property is often part of a detailed estate plan. Although some people detest the thought of establishing estate plans, sound financial planning regarding estates can offer peace of mind. Some people avoid thinking about inheritance issues because of superstitious beliefs. These superstitious individuals believe that making their wills may cause bad luck or even death. The fact is that people eventually die regardless of whether they have wills or estate plans.

Potential estate planning risks associated with online wills

Some people in Nevada are ardent do-it-yourselfers when it comes to everything from household tasks to taxes. But a DIY approach to preparing a will could contribute to some oversights or missteps that may be problematic for loved ones left behind. One potential problem is that some sites may omit important companion documents, such as a financial power of attorney and an advance healthcare directive, or only offer them with higher-priced packages.

Creating an estate plan in a blended family

People in Nevada who have remarried but have children from a previous marriage need to take steps to ensure that both their spouse and children are taken care of in the estate plan. A simple will is usually not sufficient in these situations. If a person leaves everything to the spouse, that spouse may leave nothing to the children.

The influence of step-up in cost basis on inheritance

People inheriting various assets in Nevada could enjoy certain tax advantages due to the concept known as step-up in cost basis. This term refers to an asset's increase in value while someone possesses it. A person who buys a stock for $2 a share and then sells it while still alive for $10 a share would owe capital gains taxes on the $8 per share increase in value.

Pro and cons of online estate planning documents

An estate plan is a crucial tool for individuals who want to have control over what happens to their assets if they become incapacitated or die. Without at least a will, financial power of attorney and advance health care directive, Nevada probate courts will make decisions over which a person could have had complete control. By planning ahead, no one has to rely on case law or guesswork to determine what is best for him or her at the end of his or her life.

Why the childless need estate plans too

An estate plan can be a good thing for any adult living in Nevada. This can be true even for individuals who don't have children. Creating a trust is beneficial for those who want to keep the details of an estate private after they die. It can also be helpful for those who are looking to avoid probate or otherwise looking to protect their assets.

How to account for digital assets in an estate plan

As more assets are being held or stored online, it can create challenges for Nevada residents when it comes to estate planning. For example, an individual must remember to divulge the username and password of any account that is held online. Furthermore, there may be questions over who owns a digital asset and who may access it after a person dies. These are important questions to answer as digital assets may have real value.

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