One of the most common myths with estate planning is that you can wait to do it. You can put it off. You can do it another day.
It’s often a myth that people don’t even really vocalize, except perhaps to a spouse who asks them if they have gotten started yet. But it’s something they put into practice all of the time. They think about creating a plan, decide that they are too busy or it is too confusing, and they decide they’ll do it later. It gets pushed for another day and they keep procrastinating.
In fact, to counter this, some experts go so far as to claim that the No. 1 rule of doing your estate planning is that you should not, under any circumstances, wait to get started.
The reason for this is simply that you do not know when you’ll need it. Waiting means that you may not make the plan in time. That, in turn, creates unnecessary risk for your family. If you pass away without a plan, it falls to them to decide what to do with the estate, to sort through all of the details and potentially to lose some of the estate during the probate process. You can eliminate all of those issues by planning in advance.
Remember, if you pass away unexpectedly, that’s already going to be a difficult time for your family. Even something as simple as planning a funeral can be difficult. This is not the time when you want the lack of a plan to lead to confusion and disputes. For that reason, you should ignore this myth and learn about the estate planning options you have at any age.