When White Plains area residents think about estate planning, they may think that is a task for those who are retired and nearing the end of their life. Although that generation has estate planning needs, one may be surprised that those who are in their 20s also should have an estate plan in place.

There are many reasons for those who are in their 20s to start creating their estate plan. An estate plan is not created because a person has a lot of net worth. An estate plan is created for those who are left behind after a person dies and to make it easier on them.

The first part of an estate plan that should be considered is executing a durable power of attorney and health care proxy. The people you appoint as agents under these documents can make health care decisions and financial decisions in case you become incapacitated. For example, if a college student is abroad, a parent, as agent under a power of attorney can file their taxes or assist with other financial matters while they are in another country.

Once a younger person has their first job, they should make sure their beneficiaries are named and accurate for their job’s retirement plans. They should also consider creating a will that names who will receive their assets if they die. If there is not a will, the court will need to decide who gets the assets and it may not be who a person would have chosen. Many in their 20s also have student loans and other significant debt and this should also be discussed relevant to an estate plan.