Happy holidays everyone! No, I’m not asking anyone to give someone an estate plan this time of year. However, the topic comes up quite a bit around the end of year as families get together, and as we age (and those around us do, too), it’s natural for estate planning to cross the mind. I had a recent experience with a client that wanted me to share a different perspective. Let’s call this person CJ.
- Being around 30 years old with no children;
- Not having family in the area;
- Not concerned about aging parents, their needs, or if they have an estate plan in place;
- Concerns about parents having any say-so in regards to health care, finances, and the estate (and receiving it) if something untimely happened to CJ.
I know, this isn’t how many view family and the holidays in the ‘traditional’ sense. However, each and every individual and family is different, and that is reality. As I see it, and when no planning is done, our state laws operate to accommodate the traditional, and that doesn’t address everyone’s reality. After learning of CJ’s circumstances, I asked, “Are these things that you worry about?” CJ did. So I responded, “Absolutely not, it’s not about your age, it’s about addressing what’s important to you so that you don’t have to worry about it anymore.”
Many people refer to this as “peace of mind.” It is. I call it “taking the pain away.” CJ agreed. I applauded CJ for talking to me about these things. It wasn’t easy. CJ wasn’t initially ‘excited’ to be doing it. However, we worked through the concerns and completed the plan. We recently signed everything, and CJ was excited that it was done. No more worries! CJ wanted me to share the experience with others, and to let others know, no matter their age, that though completing the estate planning process may not seem exciting or fun, there is a sense of relief when it’s over. CJ no longer worries about parental interference in the event something untimely happens.
The moral of the story is that when it comes to estate planning, age doesn’t matter. You always have the ability to be in control and put the worries in the past!
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Kyle Allen, Attorney, Hunter Law Office, P.C.