An estate plan maps out the process for administering and disposing property after you pass away. It serves to avoid confusion about your final wishes, ensure loved ones receive your assets, reduce conflict among family members and minimize taxes and legal expenses.The estate plan’s grantor puts his or her property into a trust, which the beneficiary then inherits. A trustee (or fiduciary) administers the property for the beneficiaries in accordance with the trust. Anyone who dies without an estate plan leaves the state to administer his or her assets. Loved ones might be left out, and the state might keep the assets if it can’t find the proper beneficiaries. The estate includes all property that the deceased person owned, as well as his or her assets and liabilities. Real property is usually land, while personal property includes cars, jewelry, household items, patents, cash, insurance policies and securities. Anyone who owns property, alone or with others, needs an estate plan. That includes anyone who owns assets in multiple states or owns a business, anyone with dependents, or anyone who becomes incapacitated. Estate plans are also a must for anyone in a non-traditional relationship, or for those who have been married more than once and have children. A current spouse may be less inclined to share the deceased’s estate with children from a former spouse, but an estate plan can compel them to.