No, my mother wasn’t a singer, although she did make my heart sing. She passed away in 2006 and I still miss her greatly. She was an amazing human being, as anyone who knew her could attest. She was better than Prince or Aretha Franklin in one particular area - she put the time and effort into proper Estate Planning. Something every financial advisor knows about. When I decided to join the ranks of the independent financial advisor, I studied Estate Planning as part of my insurance and investment licensing. My REAL introduction to Estate Planning came about five months after I got licensed. My mother passed away and I became the executor of her estate. Talk about trial by fire! Even though I was licensed to deal with investments and insurance as part of Estate Planning, I had no idea where to start. I understood the academic side, but now I was staring at the real-world side.
Three weeks before I assumed the executor role, my family had a meeting with a lawyer to update the will and put some other important parts of the plan together. My mother signed off on the Will, Power of Attorney, and Health Directive. I will always remember how her energy changed when she knew that the important stuff was now in place - it was like a great weight had come off her shoulders as she realized that her wishes would be attended to. I have never told that story before, but as I just finished up a three-part Estate Planning series with Estate Lawyer, Laroux Peoples, I thought of the importance of sharing. In particular, sharing how having all of her Estate Planning needs taken care of made the last three weeks of my Mom’s life better. Better in the sense that she was no longer worried about how the “stuff” would be handled when she was gone. There are lots of stories from hospital bedsides, where people have left things literally to the last minute. There are also lots of stories of people who never get it done at all, like Prince and Aretha Franklin, for example. Both of these celebrities passed away without a formal Will and Estate Plan. It’s not that they didn’t have the money to invest in the process, as Aretha and Prince were said to be worth $17 million and $100 million respectively. Aretha died without a formal will in August 2018 – two years later, it is still not settled. We lost the great Prince in 2016 – still not settled, and now one of the potential heirs has passed away, complicating things even further. Stuff happens, and bad stuff can happen at the drop of a hat. It is time to get prepared! In this era of COVID, I think it is more necessary than ever to move Estate Planning (in the words of the great Stephen Covey) from ‘Important but Not Urgent’ to ‘Important and Urgent’. What is holding you back? Is it that you don’t know who to make executor or guardian of your child(ren)? Is it that you aren’t worth $100 million? Or maybe you just wished you knew more about what you should be thinking about. If that is the case, why don’t you jump on over to our Estate Planning Page, where we have the three 30 minute videos that explain a whole lot for you. We also have a glossary of terms that will help as well. Until next time...remember, "Estate Planning Is An Importnat & Everlasting Gift You Can Give Your Family. Setting Up A Smooth Inheritance Isn't As Hard As You Might Think!!" XO-Wendy Brookhouse Organization is one of the best ways to begin estate planning. Download our masterlist today to help you compile all your important information.
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