In 2008, the 110th United States Congress passed House Resolution 1499, designating the third week of October (October 21-27, 2019) as National Estate Planning Awareness Week. In doing so, Congress undoubtedly hoped that it would increase awareness with regard to the importance and benefits of estate planning. However, a 2019 Caring.com survey found that only 43% of respondents had prepared an estate plan, compared to the 76% of respondents who believed estate planning to be important. Some indicated that this was the result of procrastination, whereas others mistakenly stated that their assets were not significant enough to require estate planning.
This Estate Planning Awareness Week, remind yourself and your loved ones of the benefits of an estate plan. A Last Will and Testament or Revocable Trust ensures that your assets are distributed according to your wishes upon your death (as opposed to the default rules under state law). Durable Powers of Attorney for Finances and Powers of Attorney for Health Care allow your designated agents to act on your behalf in the event of your incapacity, thereby avoiding the necessity of guardianship. Finally, documents such as a Living Will and Authorization for Final Disposition memorialize your wishes with regard to end of life care and your funeral and burial arrangements.
If you have any questions on this topic, please contact Lin Law LLC at (920) 393-1190.