Avoid these mistakes while estate planning in Texas

There are several mistakes people should avoid making while they estate plan to protect their assets and future.

Estate planning is a necessary part of planning for the future and for asset protection. However, many people in Texas fail to thoroughly estate plan and make a few common mistakes during the process that result in their assets being at risk.

Waiting to form an estate plan

Many people put off estate planning because they are too busy or because they do not think it is an immediate need. However, estate planning should be a priority since the future is unclear. Instead of viewing estate planning as a chore, those who have yet to establish one of these plans should think of it as a way to reduce disagreements among family members if they were ever unable to make choices independently. If, for example, someone without an estate plan became disabled, his or her family members would need to go to court to establish a guardian who can make the person's financial and healthcare decisions.

Forgetting about digital assets

Those who are in the midst of putting together an estate plan should remember that their assets are not confined to tangible items. While estate planning, digital assets, such as emails, social media accounts and digital downloads, should be accounted for in the same way a home or a car would be.

Not refining estate planning documents over time

After putting together their estate planning documents, many people file this paperwork away and do not look at it again for several years. Although having estate plans established is a good place to start, they must be refined as time passes and as a person's needs and life change. For example, if a set of parents determined guardianship for their child, but that guardian is no longer in a good situation, the parents should consider changing their estate planning documents by editing their guardianship choice.

Meeting the needs of children individually

When setting up a trust for children, parents should not feel pressured into allotting the same amount of inheritance to each one of their children. Instead, parents should consider their children's individual needs while disbursing their inheritance. For example, if parents have a special needs child who requires extra care, they might want to consider providing more to that child than a sibling.

One of the best ways to these estate planning mistakes and others like them is to consult with an attorney. Those in Texas who have yet to start estate planning or who want to refine a current plan should contact an attorney in their area for assistance.