The federal estate tax (as of 2012) applies only in cases in which the total value of the estate is in excess of $5.25 million.
If your assets add up to less than this amount, why should you worry about implementing an estate planning strategy? The fact is that estate planning is for anyone who is concerned about his or her heirs enjoying the full benefits of inheritance without facing copious amounts of stress and anxiety. Drafting a set of documents to address your unique needs and expectations can go a long way toward reducing the amount of delay between the time of your passing and the date when your heirs are finally able to receive the benefits of your generosity. Estate planning can also minimize the financial impact of probate and the claims of creditors against your estate.