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Both Aretha Franklin and Prince were outstanding performers. But they came up short in one thing that could have made the lives of their loved ones a lot less complicated. Neither of these entertainers did any estate planning and died intestate, so their estates will likely be embroiled in red tape for months and perhaps even years. Arkansas residents who want to avert such hardship for their loved ones should perhaps look into planning their estates.

Even though most people don’t want to think about dying and estate planning might not be on the list of top priorities, those individuals who, for even a moment, think about the possible ramifications their deaths could have on loved ones may take some time to get the facts on planning their estates. And yet so many Americans don’t have wills. They say they just haven’t got around to it or they believe wills are only for those people with a lot of assets.

Not so. Estate planning is for everyone. Not having a will means an estate will likely end up in probate court, which could take forever and will become public record. So, when it comes to an estate like that of Aretha Franklin, who was reportedly worth $80 million, the estate tax would be astronomical — $27.5 million to be exact. Since she didn’t have a will, all her assets may be subject to taxation again when her children die.

The importance of estate planning can’t be underplayed when it comes to doing what is best for any beneficiaries. An Arkansas estate planning attorney may be able to clear up areas that seem complicated or confusing. Estate planning doesn’t have to be difficult and is necessary for every adult, especially when children are involved.