Legacy of Love or Frustration

Having an estate plan to take care of yourself, those you love and your assets is such a relief to have completed even in the most simple of situations. But what if you don’t have a super simple situation? What if your spouse gets sick and uses up all the assets? What if this is a second marriage? What if the kids from your current or prior marriage don’t get along – or have never even met? What if you want your assets to go to your kids, but don’t want to leave your current spouse high and dry? Or, what your spouse remarries after you pass away?

These are all emotionally charged questions. Most people don’t want to address them because it can be overwhelming, rock the boat, create more questions, and even bring to light doubts about how each other or family members really feel.

The real problem, though, is if you don’t address these concerns. Maybe you don’t even do an Estate Plan, do a “cheesy” internet version that doesn’t address contingencies and “what ifs” or maybe you just bury your head in the sand and create a “rainbows and unicorns” type of plan that doesn’t address real considerations. In these situations, you may have avoided some tough conversations while you were alive, but the real problems that weren’t addressed are still there and they will come to the surface after you have passed away.

The result then is that those you love will miss you – for a while… and then we see them get frustrated with the person that passed for “not taking care of things” or for “leaving them with this mess.” Instead of leaving legacy of fond memories, clarity and maybe some stuff, those left behind will also remember that you left them in a mess or perhaps even worse off.

Please have the difficult conversations now and make sure that your Estate Plan is updated and reflects your decisions. Please do not leave these conversations for those you leave behind to have — I assure you, they will not remember it exactly the way you meant it and everyone will have their own version. This only manifests in more problems and often creates or deepens fractures in families rather than healing the loss they feel.

Written by ELTC Law Group

ELTC Law Group

We have been in business since 2007, helping the elderly and their families with a wide range of different issues including estate planning, asset preservation, long-term care, and post-death issues.