The death of a much-loved celebrity always shakes the nation. This is especially true with Luke Perry, who passed last month after a stroke in his fifties. Aside from being a significant loss to our screens, a sudden death like this is a stark reminder to everyone of our mortality. Perry, who was 52 when he died, had no idea of the fate which awaited him so soon. Still, he had the foresight to make time for estate planning. That alone has made life at least a little more bearable for those who loved him most.
Unfortunately, for many people, estate planning isn’t even a consideration. Buying a house is hard enough, without having to consider what will happen to it when you’re gone. Sadly, many people leave these important matters until it’s too late, meaning our families have to pick up the pieces and sometimes lose out.
If we can learn anything from a tragic death like this, it’s the fact that it’s never too early to start planning your estate. Back in 2015, Perry had a health scare after a cancer screening which led him to get his Will together. We can assume that he also developed a Living Trust to ensure his assets passed to his children. But, what exactly did Perry protect his family against when he made these wise decisions?
Perry’s family wouldn’t have wanted to deal with a court in the aftermath of his death. But, that’s what would have happened if he hadn’t named a living beneficiary for every asset. That’s why it’s essential to develop a Living Trust in addition to a Will. These documents define how you want your estate split. It saves the time, money, and the emotional distress of going through the probate court.
Taxes can come in many forms after you die, but estate planning can at least keep them to a minimum. Options like changing property deeds while you’re alive or starting an irrevocable trust could drastically reduce your taxes. Even being clear about who your property is going to can make a huge difference.
Perry was all too aware of the long-term implications of neglecting real-estate planning. You should be, too. Without trusts, you’ll have no way of keeping your assets safe long-term. A trust enables you to freeze property until your children come of age. You can also include certain clauses which will save that property from future lawsuits or issues such as divorce. A lawyer will be able to talk you through your options. Contact an Estate Planning Attorney to ensure your property is safe for your beneficiaries.