When you are getting ready for a trip, you have a lot of things on your mind. Many of us create lists of items to pack or errands to take care of before we leave.
One thing you may not think about before you travel is your estate plan. If you do not have an estate plan set up, creating one before you leave is a good idea. Even if you have an estate plan already established, you should review and update it before you go.
Although no one likes thinking about their own death, if something happens to you while you are on vacation or traveling, your family and loved ones back home in California may be wondering what they should do.
Review your will and/or incapacity documents
Review your will and any other estate planning documents and make any necessary updates. Consider if there have been any major changes within your family, such as births, marriages or deaths that would require any beneficiary updates.
In addition to your will, review any incapacity documents you may have drafted. These may include a living will or a health care power of attorney.
You may want to do this with the help of an estate planning attorney. It is best to do several weeks before your trip, so there is time to get any necessary changes made and reviewed.
Update any guardian or conservator appointments
You may have appointed someone to be a guardian for your minor children or a conservator for any adult children in your estate planning documents. You should also review these and verify that these are the people you still want to serve in these roles if something were to happen to you.
Locate all important documents and put them in a safe place before you leave for your trip. Tell a trusted family member where they are. This will prevent your family from having to search for the documents, which will be even more difficult to do if they are grieving.
By taking these simple steps, you can save your family stress and confusion. You can travel with the confidence of knowing your affairs are in order if something happens.