Anyone who has a growing family needs to consider the importance of estate planning. Even if you are young and in good health, the decisions that you make now can protect the people who you care about.

Being proactive and planning ahead will help assure that your family avoids unnecessary hardship. Here are some reasons why you and your loved ones can benefit from making an estate plan.

Provide for your family in the years ahead

Setting up a trust is a good way to give your family access to assets without going through probate. You can manage the trust for as long as you are able, and a person of your choosing can take over if necessary.

Avoid litigation or probate

The disposition of property can be a subject of serious contention among even tightly knit families. Taking some time to formalize your wishes may spare loved ones from hostility towards one another and eliminate uncertainty.

Protect investments

After a person dies or experiences some form of incapacity, it may be difficult or time consuming for family to attain authority to access active investments. In a volatile market, any avoidable delay could result in significant losses. Having a power of attorney in place can help your family maintain investment interests.

Regardless of your age or assets, your family needs you to start the estate planning process as soon as reasonably possible. Let your family know about what you are planning and get some constructive input about what you can do to support them in the future.