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Why you still need an estate plan if you have no children

On Behalf of | Jul 28, 2023 | Estate Planning

Having a California estate plan put together helps ensure that you have plans in place should the unexpected occur. It also gives you a way to choose who you want to take ownership of your assets after your death. Yet, many people neglect to put estate plans together, and some who do so cite not having children as their main reason for failing to put a plan together.

However, Kiplinger notes that there are many strong arguments for having an estate plan, even if you do not have, and have no plans to ever have, children. Here are a few reasons why having an estate plan is important, regardless of whether you are a parent.

It gives you decision-making power over where your assets go

Not having children does not mean you have no opinions about where your assets end up. Maybe you want to leave your legacy behind to a brother, sister, niece, nephew or other family member, or maybe you have a nonprofit you support that you want to inherit some of your money. Having an estate plan lets you decide what happens to the legacy you worked hard to amass, rather than leaving the decision up to state laws.

It lets you plan for incapacity

Adding advance medical directives to an estate plan also gives you a say in what happens to you medically, should you become unable to tell your care team your wishes. Different advance directives let you express your wishes with regard to everything from resuscitation to organ donation.

While these are two key reasons to put an estate plan together, regardless of whether you have kids, there are many additional arguments for putting at least a basic plan together.