Got a plan? Whether you’re single or married, divorced or widowed, a parent or not, you need an estate plan. That’s true for men and women, but women face challenges that make it even more important for them to start planning sooner rather than later.
Gender isn’t and shouldn’t be important when it comes to so much in life. However, it actually should be something you take into account when it comes to estate planning. Men and women are simply different, often have different legal folds to their life, and therefore women may need to be more careful in their estate planning.
On that note, MarketWatch had a bit of advice for women worth sharing in a recent article titled “How women can make estate planning easier.” The challenges that end up arising for women can seem subtle or can be outright life-altering. Either way there are important aspects to account for whether planning as a married couple or as a single person.
First and foremost, women tend to live longer. Living longer means a longer retirement and more medical bills to pay cover, which can actually mean a retirement crisis when incomes are wrapped up with a partner or a partner’s social security benefits.
Statistically, women also have a tendency to have custody over or offer care to their children or their own elderly parents. When it’s all said and done, wives and husbands may even think differently about the future and the end-game, but the wife may eventually live out the plan.
There is no reason to resort to comparisons of Mars to Venus, but there are enough differences between men and women that we have to respect them and account for them in our planning. There is also no one solution as married women will have different needs than single ones and past or future marriages can change it all over again. It is simply important for women to plan and plan well. Fortunately, there is much advice to be gleaned on the topic, and the assistance of experienced estate planning legal counsel is essential.
You can learn more about this topic as well as other strategies on our website under the tab entitled: estate planning in Virginia. Be sure you also sign up for our complimentary e-newsletter so that you may be informed of all the latest issues that could affect you, your loved ones and your estate planning.
Reference: MarketWatch (May 8, 2014) “How women can make estate planning easier”