In honor of Women’s History Month, we want to discuss the importance of estate planning for women. Estate planning should not be a morbid or awkward subject of discussion. Nothing is more caring than creating a solid estate plan to promote family harmony. An estate plan can ensure that our loved ones are taken care of after passing. A thoughtful estate plan can ensure that your property is distributed according to your wishes while also limiting family conflict, estate taxes, and the likelihood of predatory or devious creditors harassing your heirs.
Three Reasons Women Need to Create an Estate Plan
When deciding whether to create an estate plan, you can find yourself thinking of why you don’t need one. It’s not uncommon for people to avoid issues and tasks that make them feel sad or uncomfortable. Nothing makes most of us more emotional than thinking of a time when we will no longer be with our loved ones. But, putting together an estate plan can give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing you’re caring for them even when you are no longer with them. During Women’s History Month, we are reminded of several reasons women should be sure they are focusing on planning for their family’s future.
Women should prioritize an estate plan because:
- Women Live Longer: Estate planning is critical for women because they tend to live longer than men. According to the Social Security Administration, the life expectancy for a woman is approximately five years longer than for a man. This means that women need to ensure their assets will cover all the possible long-term care or health needs they may encounter in the future. There is also a good chance that a woman will outlive her spouse and be tasked with administering the joint wealth and estate to their heirs. So, it’s essential that if a woman is married, she becomes involved in the decision-making and estate planning before the death of her spouse or partner.
- Women Earn Less: Did you know women tend to earn less during their lives than men? On average, women make 82 cents for every dollar earned by men. This means that women likely need to plan to make fewer dollars last for a longer lifetime. This also means that women need to utilize the best asset protection strategies and estate planning tools available to protect their wealth and legacy. Despite the income gap, women professionals are increasingly taking on the breadwinner role in families across the country. Women now make up more than 50 percent of realtors, lawyers, psychologists, pharmacists, veterinarians, authors, and opticians. Today, women are more likely to obtain a four-year degree, and they’ve recently surpassed men in medical school enrollment. Women in high-risk professions, including medicine, law, and real estate, need to think about asset protection strategies in case of a malpractice suit. In addition, business owners need to consider liability protection and succession plans.
- Women Are Caregivers: Women are often caretakers in families. Most custodial parents are women, which means that mothers of young children need to plan for the care and needs of their children in case they are incapacitated or pass away. An effective estate plan will identify guardians, provide for minor children, and instill values, even if mom is no longer around. Women are also usually the caretakers of their elderly parents or disabled relatives, which requires careful planning to ensure these loved ones have resources available for their continued support.
Make Your Estate Plan a Priority, Schedule an Appointment Today!
Creating an estate plan protects your assets and ensures your wishes for the future are known. Even if you think it’s too soon to draft an estate plan, you don’t have to worry. At Jerimy Kirschner & Associates, PLLC, we can help you update your estate plan, so it’s always reflective of your life and goals. We recommend reviewing your estate plan annually or anytime you have a milestone event. Our team can help you start the process anytime. We offer a free consultation, so give us a call at (206) 203-8802 today.