People tend to think about estate planning in terms of death and dying. While these concepts are central to the process of estate law, preparing for your death is not the point of most estate plans — you are preparing to improve the lives of those who survive you.
Nobody can avoid the inevitable. What people can typically do is plan in such a way that they can predict and provide for the needs of their family.
Reducing your risks
One of the key factors of any estate plan is that it should work for the individual situation. As explained on FindLaw, you have to know where you are in life before you know which plans you need.
If you are a younger person considering estate planning, you can probably get started right away with very little investment or effort. At this stage, you would probably be dealing with any complex assets, such as inherited real estate, or creating foundational documents, such as wills.
Setting a plan in place
As you begin to build a family and get older, you also probably will accrue assets. Starting a plan early — in your forties, for example — could help you avoid any tax or Social Security surprises down the road. It could also help you provide for your children if you pass away unexpectedly.
Building a better future
By retirement, you probably have already established some of the most important estate planning instruments for your specific situation. Your living wills and advance health care directives are probably already in place. Your goal at this stage is usually maintaining your plan and dealing with any legal or familial changes that arise.
You can start today with your estate plan, or build on what you already have. There really is no minimum or maximum age. There is no need to be ill or in immediate danger. There is always an opportunity to create a better future for those you care about.