Estate planning can get complicated, so it makes sense to turn to technology in order to help lighten the load of the process. Maybe you need your grandkids to show you how to upload photos to Facebook; however, that does not mean you should eschew the benefits of the digital age when estate planning. Using technology wisely can help you save time and money as the estate planner, and potentially help your heirs sort through your assets faster when you die.
Tip 1: Reduce the Paper
Estate planning is often synonymous with “boxes of paperwork” for many people, but in the modern world this is not the case. There are many ways that you can harness technology to reduce the amount of actual paperwork that your heirs will need to go through. According to Tech Radar, reducing the amount of paper can improve overall productivity by 30% for businesses; doing the same thing for your estate will streamline everything significantly.
As you do this, you will want to ensure that you have a scanner and a shredder handy. You can dispose of many things once you digitize them (that is the point of the process, after all!) but you will want to ensure that you destroy any documents with sensitive financial information right away with the shredder. Once you have the documents digitized, store them on a secure service like Evernote so that they are easily searchable and accessible for your financial advisor and your heirs.
Tip 2: Get Informed
One of the best things about the digital age is that you can access libraries of information at the simple touch of a button. Of course, good advice from a knowledgeable financial advisor is a must, but you can take advantage of technology to help you educate yourself about the process. For instance, do you know the difference between a grantor, settlor and the trustor of a trust? Clicking on this link will inform you if you are not sure.
The more informed you are about estate planning, the more influence you have during the process. Of course, you will always be able to ascertain that any information you find on the internet is true with the help of a trusted advisor.
Tip 3: Communicate Effectively
Technology is vital for effective communication in the modern world. At its most basic level, teleconferencing solutions like Zoom or WebEx can help us communicate with the click of a button. Depending on your current health concerns, these solutions may help you be able to talk to a financial advisor (or family) without having to leave the safety of your home environment. Social media helps us stay connected even when we have to be apart: virtually everybody has email.
Make sure you include your communication platforms in your estate plan. For instance, who will you give access to your social media platforms and email addresses when you die? It is possible that your heirs will require this access to get through probate.
Technology can help make sure that your estate plan is robust and easily-accessible for your heirs. Contact us today at AmeriEstate to get the advice you need to create a custom, comprehensive estate plan tailored to your needs.