It can be easy to overlook, but an estate plan is essential for nearly everyone, whether you have a lot of money or just a little. An estate plan tells your heirs and the courts how to divide up your assets, but it also helps protect your loved ones from unnecessary hassle and expense – as well as potentially months, even years, tied up in the court system settling your estate.

“Constructing a strong estate plan can be very beneficial to you and your loved ones and will help minimize the probate process, expenses, delays, and loss of privacy,” says Brett Gersack, a wealth advisor at Halbert Hargrove in Bellevue, Washington. “If done properly, the estate plan can help significantly reduce the amount of tax and fees the estate owes at death.” Read more

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