arkansas estate plan checklist

The thought of estate planning can be overwhelming. Who gets your belongings after you pass? What happens if you become ill or incapacitated? Do you even need a plan if you don’t have many assets? No matter one’s age, health, or wealth, a strong estate plan is essential in determining what happens to you and your assets. But where do you start? Although forming an estate plan can be complex, we’ve included below some of the most important parts of planning your estate. 


When most people think of estate planning, the first thing that comes to mind is a will. A will is a legal document that details how you want your property and other assets to be distributed after your death. It’s more than that, though; your will can also determine who will care for minor children if you become disabled or pass away, name an executor for your estate, and establish trusts. Wills can vary greatly in complexity depending on the person and his or her assets, and it’s only one part of the big picture of planning an estate. 


Trusts are essential in ensuring that your assets are handled according to your wishes before and after your death. A trustee is named to manage money on behalf of other beneficiaries. Trusts are helpful in minimizing estate taxes and avoiding probate. An Arkansas estate planning attorney is your best resource for forming a secure trust that will help your loved ones avoid going through probate, which can be lengthy and expensive. 

Power of Attorney

Sometimes, events can take place that don’t allow you to make your own decisions. A power of attorney (POA) is someone you appoint to make decisions on your behalf should you become unable to make those decisions for yourself. There are different types of POA, and the type you choose can make a big difference in how your estate is handled. It’s also important to put a lot of thought into who you choose to be your POA as they will be the one to help pay your bills, manage investments, and handle your affairs before and after your death.

Health Care Directive

Decisions about your health care can be included in your POA or can be kept separate. If you have specific wishes regarding your healthcare, you can detail what you want to happen in documents like an advanced medical directive. These documents are important in the event of an accident or illness, allowing you to appoint an agent to make healthcare decisions on your behalf. It’s important to have other health care information, such as insurance information and policies, included in your estate plan. 

Do you need an attorney to help plan your estate in Arkansas?

The documents and procedures listed above are just a part of the process of planning your estate. If you’re ready to form a strong estate plan or want to make updates or changes to your current plan, a knowledgeable attorney can help. At L. Jennings Law, we have experience with planning simple and complex estates to ensure our clients wishes are honored. Contact us to schedule a consultation to see how we can help you plan for the future of you and your loved ones. 

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