Unquestionably, one of the supreme misconceptions harbored by young couples with children is that attending to an estate plan is not something they need to think about.
And attendant to that misconception is an equally supreme irony that perhaps no other demographical group has greater need to carefully consider and implement sound basis estate planning understandings and processes.
As we note on the Planning for Parents of Minor Children page of our estate planning and administration website at the Newman Law Group in Orange County, young California couples with kids eschew estate planning for myriad reasons.
For starters, they’re vibrant and healthy, thinking firmly of the future and believing that they have many years — perhaps decades — to get things right. That time is not now, they believe.
And some younger couples likely harbor unrealistic assumptions about what implementing a well-considered estate plan will cost them. The cost is often far less than they imagine.
And then there’s this: Many youthful couples and parents believe that estate administration matters focus solely on issues surrounding money. Given that many young spouses don’t have much wealth and are in an accumulation phase during the early years of their marriage, they think that forgoing an estate plan until they are on stronger financial footing makes eminent sense.
Those beliefs and concerns are all understandable, of course. Young couples with children need to absolutely know, though, that in the event they become incapacitated through injury, illness or death, their kids could face an uncertain future in the absence of an estate plan that has carefully considered just such a situation.
Indeed, estate planning for young couples is often centrally focused on the welfare of children. A will designating a guardian (and, ideally, an alternate guardian, as well) is obviously far preferable to an outcome where a judge must appoint a caregiver for children based solely on state law requirements.
It is never too early for a young people — especially if they have children — to secure the peace of mind that comes from knowing their kids are provided for in the event that an adverse circumstance complicates life.
We work closely with clients of all ages, helping them deal with future contingencies through soundly considered and appropriately tailored estate plans. We welcome visits to our website.