I frequently talk to individuals who are about to start new businesses. Sometimes, our conversation reveals that the nascent entrepreneur is:
- Age 30-something,
- Married, and
- Parent of a young child, or has a first child on the way.
When I learn this, I immediately ask, “Have you done any estate planning?” The answer invariably is “No.”
My response, then, often is, “At this point in your life, estate planning is even more important than starting your business. Tend to that, first.”
Everyone should have an estate plan, but the need is especially great once you have a child, and even more so? if you are the family’s principal wage earner.
Estate planning need not be complex or expensive if one has limited financial means. There are many free resources to help you get pointed in the right direction. For example, the State Bar of California page about wills, trusts and estates discusses such questions as:
- Do I need a will?
- Do I need estate planning?
- Do I need a living trust?
In addition, Nolo’s Wills, Trusts & Estates Center provides a great amount of information, plus books and form documents for do-it-yourself estate planning.
Starting a new business takes a lot of time and energy, but it is no excuse for failing to provide protection against the worst for your family.
Dana H. Shultz, Attorney at LawÂ +1 510 547-0545Â dana [at] danashultz [dot] com
This blog does not provide legal advice and does not create an attorney-client relationship. If you need legal advice, please contact a lawyer directly.