When it comes to planning your estate, having your life’s documents organized and ready to create your estate planning documents can help you save hours of your time, not to mention saving you the added headache of trying to find the information that you need. An organizer is not a legal document. It, however, can become part of your estate if you leave instructions to your executor.

To get your documents in order, you should list all of your basic information, such as your address, legal name, and where you work. You should also include information that is private to you, but would need to be settled on your death. For example, credit card numbers, insurance policies, and any real estate that you own at the time of your death. It is best to keep all of these documents in one easy to access place such as in a binder or folder to be kept with the rest of your estate planning documents.

The more information that you included in your estate planning organizer, the more helpful it will be to your loved ones and/or executor. Be as detailed as you can. Provide the location of important documents or items, even if the items are in an obvious place such as a house vault. When you begin to complete your estate planning organizer, remember to pace yourself. There is a lot of information that you need to include. Rushing through the process is a recipe for forgetting something important.

Once you have created your estate planning organizer, you should make updates as major changes in your life happen. This does not need to be done at every turn of the hat, but you should do it periodically. 



This blog entry was written by Sanket Mistry.

Sanket Mistry, J.D., M.I.A.      Sanket Mistry is the founder and CEO of Peerless Legal and blogs regularly. He has written numerous books including, "25 Estate Planning Forms," "8 Living Trust Forms," "Simple Will Creator," "Give Through a Will & Living Trust," and "Guidance On Creating Your Own Will & Power of Attorney," and the bestselling books in the Legal Self-Help Guide series, "Will, Trust, & Power of Attorney Creator and Estate Records Organizer" and "Estate Planning in Plain-English." He earned his JD from the Walter F. George School of Law at Mercer University and is a member of the New York State Bar. He has worked, and volunteered, at a number of nonprofits, government agencies, and for-profit corporations. He also holds a BA in philosophy from Emory University and a MIA from Columbia University. He is an avid traveler and tennis player.