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The many different duties of an estate plan

Many people in North Dakota wonder what the future holds for them and their families. While there may be concerns about what will happen to their assets and family members upon their death, there are, fortunately, steps that can be taken to provide peace of mind, including the creation of an estate plan. While most people think of such an option as being only for the wealthy, there are many pieces to an effective estate plan that can help in a variety of different situations. 

Perhaps most importantly to parents, an estate plan can name who will provide care for minor children. Additionally, parents can name someone to be a guardian of the estate and manage assets for the children until they can make such decisions on their own. A carefully created estate plan can also potentially reduce the chances of conflict between family members when wishes are clearly expressed. Some tools, such as a living trust, can maintain privacy regarding the state and shorten the probate process.

Estate plans do not only deal with what happens after a person dies. For example, many people include documents in their estate plan that will name someone who will make decisions for them in the event they become unable to do so on their own. A durable power of attorney and medical power of attorney names someone to make financial and medical decisions, respectively, potentially preventing confusion and additional hardship in a time that is already difficult.  

There are many people in North Dakota who may feel that the creation of an estate plan is an overwhelming process. Fortunately, there are experienced professionals who can help guide them through the process. With such assistance, they are often able to make their wishes known, potentially lessening the chances of a successful challenge.