Many single people, especially those who do not have children, wonder if
they need an estate plan. The answer is Yes! Without an estate plan, your
assets will be distributed according to your state’s intestate succession
(died without a will) statute. The good news is that your assets will
be passed on; the bad news is that it may not be to the people you would
Also, although many single people don’t have children, they do have
pets. An estate plan gives you the opportunity to provide for the care
of your pet once you have died. You can either set up a pet trust for
your pet’s care or name a caretaker and give that caretaker a designated
amount of money to use for your pet. Other considerations are charities
and friends. Without affirmative action on your part to include them in
an estate plan, they will not receive anything.
If you are single, even if you are now convinced that putting an estate
plan in place is a good idea, meeting with a lawyer and talking about
death may not top of your list of fun ways to spend your afternoon. Therefore,
you may not feel an urgency to make that estate planning appointment.
However, why gamble with your life’s savings and the people, pets
and organizations you care about? By taking the steps now to put your
estate plan in place you can avoid the potentially sad legacy of letting
the state, rather than you decide who will benefit from all your hard work.