Procrastination is the number one mistake people make in estate planning. Everyone knows that death is certain to occur but uncertain as to timing. Despite this, numerous surveys suggest that more than half of adults in the U.S. fail to make a formal estate plan. I say “formal” because even having “no plan” is having a plan — the State’s plan! If you die without a Will or Trust, the State will decide for you. Is that what you really want?
Even armed with knowledge, people still delay. Few things are more unsettling than contemplating one’s own mortality. Thinking about the possibility of incapacity, such as dementia or Alzheimer Disease, is equally difficult. But delay will be your undoing. “Coulda – Shoulda – Woulda.” Don’t let this happen to you.
It may surprise you to know that most people find that the actual planning process was not as bad as they imagined and experience a great sense of relief and security once a plan is in place. This can be especially true if you have a good estate planning attorney willing to take the time to really educate you about what it is that’s being done and why. Don’t settle for a “just sign here” approach. Some estate planning concepts are a lot to take in, but you should understand what you’re doing. Even if you later forget the explanation, at least have the assurance that you understood it when you signed it and it reflected the result you wanted.