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Why Not Have a Will?

March 21, 2022 •  Legacy Law LLC
Out of sight, out of mind isn't just an everyday adage—it's one of the reasons why people 50 and over fail to write a will, update a previous one, or make other estate planning decisions.

For one couple, this important task was set aside for more than four decades. They had a will created when their children were toddlers to name guardians and ensure financial security for the children, as described by Next Avenue in the article “6 Reasons You’re Putting Off Writing a Will and How to Overcome Them.”

This important task is all too easy to put off. However, it’s a big mistake to do so. Here’s why.

You think you’ve time to “get around to it.” However, the last few years have shown, we don’t know when illness will strike. A better approach: make an appointment to meet with an experienced estate planning attorney. Write it down on the calendar and don’t postpone it. There’s no guarantee you’ll live a long life, no matter how much we’d all like to.

You think you don’t have enough assets to bother with a will. Here’s the thing. An estate plan is not just about money. It also includes end-of-life planning, naming someone to have control of finances if you become incapacitated and can’t do so for yourself. It also includes giving someone the power to make healthcare decisions. A Power of Attorney, Healthcare Power of Attorney (or Proxy), and Living Will can prevent your loved ones from the expensive and time consuming process of having to go to court to be appointed a guardian or spend the rest of their lives wishing they’d known what you wanted.

You’d rather not think about your own mortality. Join the club. None of us wants to think about death, dying, or being seriously ill. However, if you wait until you’re too sick to deal with these issues, you may get care you don’t want, prolonged suffering when you wanted to be allowed to die, etc.

If you die without an estate plan in place, your children may be left fighting over everything: whether to sell the house, how to distribute assets fairly, who gets Dad’s license plate collection or Mom’s silver tea set. Some siblings never reconcile after spats over personal possessions.

You think it’ll take too much time. Unless you have a vast empire of real estate holdings, investments and millions, an estate plan and related documents do not take any more time than planning a vacation. After meeting with an experienced estate planning attorney to review your assets, discuss your wishes for the future and review your family situation, the documents can be sent back and forth via email until they are completed. Executing the documents will take another office visit, unless your state permits remote signatures, which many still do. It’s time well spent.

You don’t want to make hard decisions. Neither does anyone else. However, if you don’t, the state will, as your estate will be governed by the laws of your state. You may not like the distributions You can also make changes to your will and other estate planning documents. It’s on paper, not stone.

The final sticking point: you don’t want to pay for an estate plan. This is the problem you, your spouse and your children will run into. If you don’t have a proper estate plan created and the court decrees that your handwritten will is invalid, none of your wishes may be followed. Your family will end up paying more to retain an attorney to clean up the mess, and some of the problems they encounter may not be fixable.

Your loved ones won’t be grieving, they’ll be battling. The cost of not having an estate plan will come out of their inheritance.

The fix is easy. Call an experienced estate planning attorney, make an appointment and get started. You and your family will be better prepared for whatever life brings you. You’ll also enjoy the peace of mind of knowing that you’ve done the right thing for your loved ones.

Reference: Next Avenue (Feb. 25, 2022) “6 Reasons You’re Putting Off Writing a Will and How to Overcome Them.”

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Bethany was amazing very helpful and kind. Made me feel very comfortable in a rough situation. Made sure I got what I wanted set up and took care of me and my family. Awesome job. I recommend her 100%.
Cari Covolo
December 22, 2021.
Bethany was professional, very knowledgeable, personable, and easy to work with. She made the daunting task of setting up a will easy and seamless.
Amanda Larson
October 21, 2021.
Bethany was great! She explained the details of probate and how it works in detail. Our purpose was to protect our children in the untimely event of both of us passing at the same time. The estate planning put our minds at ease. She encourages us to follow up with her periodically and make sure everything is still in order. This impressed us, she cares.
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October 13, 2021.
Bethany was great to work with! We highly recommend Legacy Law. Bethany was always well prepared and made things feel simple and easy to understand. She made a process that can feel overwhelming feel simple and manageable to do. She is very organized, professional and caring. She did an excellent job in preparing all the estate documents and helping us create a living trust!
Carey Larson
October 8, 2021.
Bethany was really helpful in getting our trust set in place; she answered all our questions thoroughly and we have peace of mind that our estate and affairs are in order. Highly recommend!
Paul Alvey
September 6, 2021.
I was pretty nervous/unsure about needing a will/ trust and decided to explore my options. I found an introductory video on-line from Legacy Law. From there I set up a meeting with Bethany and went in with a boatload of questions. My questions were answered patiently and with great expertise. I never felt pressured and came out feeling reassured and comfortable with my choices/decisions. This was all done professionally and in a very timely manner. To this day, if I have a question all I have to do is give Bethany or Brynn a call. It is without hesitation that I recommend Legacy Law and their services.
Patsy Christensen
August 31, 2021.
Thank you LegacyLaw Estate planning was a breeze with them .
Deborah Doak
August 21, 2021.
Bethany was great! Very professional and personal. She was always able and willing to answer our questions and come up with the best solution for our needs. I highly recommend her for estate planning and to navigate all the legal intricacies related to that.
Jeff Wilson
August 20, 2021.
Bethany was very professional, reasonably priced and very thorough when working with us on our trust. We highly recommend her for very individualized planning and attention to detail.
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August 9, 2021.
Bethany was very professional and easy to work with. She answered all my questions and helped me put together a good living trust that I feel comfortable with. I would highly recommend her to anyone who is thinking about estate planning.
Steve Boyd
August 3, 2021.
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