You Think You Already Have an Estate Plan in Place
If you already have a Will, Trust, Health Care Directives and/or a Power of Attorney in place, you may think you don’t need to come in for your Wealth Planning Session.
Here’s why you do.
Estate planning documents by themselves are meaningless to your family if they are not kept up to date throughout your lifetime and if your assets are not owned in the right way to keep your family out of Court and out of conflict, if and when something happens to you.
If there have been any changes in your life, the law, or your assets since you put those documents in place and you haven’t updated them, then you should keep your appointment so we can make sure your plan still serves you and your family the way you originally intended.
And, if you have minor children at home, there is a very good chance that the documents were not prepared properly in the first place. As a result, your children could be at risk of not being raised by the people you want if something happened to you and your spouse. Sadly, most lawyers simply do not have the knowledge, training or experience to plan properly for the care of minor children.
Not to worry though… we’ll discuss how to fix all this when you come in to meet with us.
You May Think You Do Not Have Enough Assets
You may be thinking you do not have any Family Wealth to plan for or that you don’t have an estate. And if that is the case, why should you invest the time and energy to plan for and protect what you don’t even have?
In reality, you DO have Family Wealth, no matter how much or how little financial wealth you have.
Family Wealth, which we will be discussing during our Planning Session, goes far beyond your money.
It covers everything you create in your life and pass on when you are gone. No matter what, your family will have to make hard decisions, pay your bills, get access to your home, deal with your vehicle and manage your social media accounts when something happens to you.
This can either be easy for them during a time of extreme grief, or very, very hard.
What you do now is what determines how hard or how easy it will be for your family.
And, if you have dependent children at home, planning is an absolute must.
You would never think of leaving your young kids or teens at home for an extended period with the someone you can’t trust to properly care for them, would you?
So why would you leave the choice of their permanent guardian, the person who would take care of your children for a substantial portion of their young lives, to chance if something happens to you?
The Wealth Planning Session you have scheduled with us is designed to take an honest look at what you really need in place to provide for the well-being, care, and ease of the people you love the most.
If it turns out you don’t need any planning at all beyond the initial meeting, you will leave our office educated, informed and feeling great that you have done the right thing by your family. You will have investigated what’s necessary to make things as easy as possible for them at the end of your life.
Plus, most people who meet with us say that they’ve never felt more organized or at ease about their financial life than after experiencing the Wealth Planning process.
But, if it turns out you do need some legal work beyond the initial Planning Session, we will work together to determine what’s right for you and your family based on your needs, your budget, and your stage of life.
And most importantly, we will make sure that whatever gets put in place will stay up to date and continue to work throughout your lifetime.
You Think You Can’t Afford to Plan
The last reason you may not want to keep your appointment is that you may think you cannot afford to plan.
That may or may not be true.
But you don’t have to worry about that just yet. When we meet, we are first going to look at whether or not you even need to plan.
If it turns out you do need to plan, we will work together to make it affordable for you and your family.
If you do not need to plan, you will leave the meeting feeling great about having done everything you can to make sure things will be as easy as possible for your loved ones if and when something happens to you.
So, rest easy, don’t worry about a thing.
We are here to make this whole process of thinking about these difficult subjects as easy as possible for you and your family.
I look forward to meeting with you for your Wealth Planning Session.
Please remember to complete your Family Wealth Inventory and Assessment and return it to us before your Wealth Planning Session so we can make the very most of our time together.
Very Truly Yours,
James W. Hart
Attorney & Counselor at Law
Estate Planning and Elder Law Attorney