Estate Planning Basics
AAA
  1. Estate Planning: Introduction
  2. Estate Planning: Estate Planning Basics
  3. Estate Planning: Introduction To Wills
  4. Estate Planning: Other Types Of Wills
  5. Estate Planning: Will Substitutes
  6. Estate Planning: Introduction To Trusts
  7. Estate Planning: Marital And Non-Marital Trusts
  8. Estate Planning: Charitable Trusts
  9. Estate Planning: Estate Taxation
  10. Estate Planning: Life Insurance In Estate Planning
  11. Estate Planning: Health Problems, Money Matters And Death
  12. Estate Planning: Conclusion

Estate Planning: Introduction

by Cathy Pareto, CFP®, AIF®

When most people hear the words "estate planning" they usually think that wealthy individuals are the only ones who need it. But they couldn't be more wrong. Regardless of how much money you have, you need to think about what will happen to your assets and who should receive the things you own after you pass away.

An estate plan can be as simple as having a will and naming a beneficiary for your 401(k), or as complicated as having several trusts for different purposes in addition to your will. Let's explore why you need to think about having an estate plan regardless of the value of your assets.


For basic information on estate planning, read Getting Started On Your Estate Plan.

For more estate planning dos and don'ts, read Six Estate Planning Must-Haves and Top 7 Estate Planning Mistakes.

Estate Planning: Estate Planning Basics

  1. Estate Planning: Introduction
  2. Estate Planning: Estate Planning Basics
  3. Estate Planning: Introduction To Wills
  4. Estate Planning: Other Types Of Wills
  5. Estate Planning: Will Substitutes
  6. Estate Planning: Introduction To Trusts
  7. Estate Planning: Marital And Non-Marital Trusts
  8. Estate Planning: Charitable Trusts
  9. Estate Planning: Estate Taxation
  10. Estate Planning: Life Insurance In Estate Planning
  11. Estate Planning: Health Problems, Money Matters And Death
  12. Estate Planning: Conclusion
RELATED TERMS
  1. Wealth Management

    A high-level professional service that combines financial/investment ...
  2. See-Through Trust

    A trust that is treated as the beneficiary of an individual retirement ...
  3. Settlor

    The entity that establishes a trust. The settlor also goes by ...
  4. Personal Representative

    The executor or administrator for the estate of a deceased person. ...
  5. Contingent Beneficiary

    1. A beneficiary specified by an insurance contract holder who ...
  6. Laughing Heir

    A distant relative who has inheritance rights despite not having ...
  1. What is the difference between an intervivos trust and a testamentary trust?

    Understand the differences between a testamentary trust and an inter-vivos (living) trust, and learn why each is important ...
  2. How are contingent beneficiaries informed of a payout?

    Understand how contingent beneficiaries are made aware of a policy payout, and learn what policy owners can do to ensure ...
  3. What are the restrictions for naming a given individual as my contingent beneficiary?

    Understand what restrictions may exist, depending on your state and the policy you choose, on naming your life insurance ...
  4. How do you mediate a dispute between primary and contingent beneficiaries of a trust?

    Learn about some of the different methods for resolving disputes between primary and contingent beneficiaries on transfer ...

You May Also Like

Related Tutorials
  1. Retirement

    In-Depth Guide To Estate Planning

Trading Center
×

You are using adblocking software

Want access to all of Investopedia? Add us to your “whitelist”
so you'll never miss a feature!