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The biggest estate planning mistake possible

When creating an estate plan, there are a number of errors that individuals can make. Some of these mistakes are minor, while others can have a significant impact on the division of wealth following one's death. The biggest mistake of all, however, lies in the failure to create any type estate planning package. Failure to act can make a loss all the more difficult for New Jersey residents who survive a loved one.

Ironically, individuals who fail to create their own estate plans do, in fact, have plans that will dictate the division of their accumulated wealth. That plan is created by the state in which the individual resided prior to his or her death. The rules in that state will provide a clear path toward the division of assets. Unfortunately, that plan may not be at all in line with the wishes of the deceased.

People fail to address their estate planning needs for a variety of reasons. Some are simply uncomfortable acknowledging their own mortality. Others simply believe that estate planning is a task for another day. That day, however, sometimes never comes. In such cases, the people who are left behind may face a difficult battle to gain the division of wealth that was intended.

The New Year is just around the corner, and a new year brings thoughts of new beginnings. New Jersey residents who have put off creating comprehensive plans should take this opportunity to address their estate planning needs. Doing so will ensure that one's wishes are followed when the time comes. It may also remove heavy burdens from their shoulders and remove a significant item off of the lifetime to-do list.  

Source: wmur.com, "Money Matters: Common estate planning mistakes", Marc Hebert, Dec. 10, 2015

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