Neglecting one’s estate plans could result in challenges for survivors in the event of an unexpected death. However, a Florida resident may live a long life with the expectation of passing on remaining assets to children or other heirs upon death. In spite of responsible financial activities, estate value could be minimal by that point due to a lack of preventive efforts to protect assets. Good planning includes addressing the issues that could deplete resources without careful monitoring.

Many factors can contribute to the reduction of an estate over time, undermining the objectives of an estate plan and leaving beneficiaries with little value. For example, an individual may neglect to cover death-related expenses in an estate plan. Issues such as high medical bills, funeral costs, the probate process and basic utility bills for maintaining a property after death should be taken into consideration. A lack of cash on hand in the estate could also result in an emergency sale of property at a decreased value. Similarly, a family business might need to close due to inadequate assets or hefty legal obligations. In other cases, an estate may be given to someone who is not well-suited to managing the funds. Inflation can erode an estate’s value as well.

The beginning of a decline may be challenging to identify in one’s estate, and the action can be difficult to counter. Experienced estate planning advice may be important for identifying vulnerabilities in one’s plan to ensure that timely efforts can be made to protect the value.

An individual who is concerned with the declining value of an estate may want to discuss the situation with an estate planning lawyer. The lawyer may include a financial adviser in the process to ensure that appropriate measures are evaluated for managing assets for current needs while creating a sound approach to asset distribution after one’s death.

Luis E. Barreto