Sources estimate that approximately 50 percent of Americans, including many here in Georgia, die without a will. Few people are comfortable contemplating their own deaths and, as such, fail to create an estate plan in time or fail to update an old one. This lack of planning could result in probate litigation as surviving family members argue over the estate left behind, creditors come calling and tax issues arise.
It is human nature to put off tasks that we just do not want to do. Estate planning is often one of those tasks. Many Georgia residents would likely admit that they also do not see any urgency in creating an estate plan. Family members might also not want to discuss the subject, which can make it difficult to plan.
With a variety of options available when it comes to estate planning, some people are simply overwhelmed with the choices and are not able to make a decision. Even taking all of these factors into account does not compare to the issues that surviving family members could have to deal with after an individual passes away. What could be a straight forward and uncomplicated probate can quickly descend into chaos without proper planning.
Even under the best of circumstances, failing to plan can cost extra time and money that will delay and diminish distributions to heirs. When probate litigation is added into the mix, there might be little left for heirs and beneficiaries when all is said and done. To avoid these entanglements, it would be a good idea for every adult regardless of age or wealth to create an estate plan without further delay.
Source: sabethaherald.com, "Procrastination Factor -- Why we avoid any estate planning", Bob Schumann, Nov. 14, 2016