Time magazine online in its Feb. 26 edition has a funny article by Joel Stein about his experience with an estate planning attorney. Embedded in the article is a link to an older article by Sally Stich which has this great final paragraph about the responsibility of parents to do estate planning.
That is the crux of the problem. Parents don’t want to think about their death either, and nobody wants to talk about it. But, say experts, parents need to be parents one last time. “It’s selfish not to take care of these end-of-life issues,” says Dennis Belcher, chairman of the Real Property, Probate and Trust Law section of the American Bar Association, “and selfish not to communicate with your kids about them.” More important, it’s the final statement you make as a parent. Done openly, it will ensure the greatest legacy of all: family members who remain friends after you’re gone.
This conjures up one of my maxims that not doing estate planning (like not having life insurance when your children are young) is parental malpractice. And, unlike Joel Stein’s experience in the article linked above, estate planning doesn’t have to be complicated and expensive. If you are a California resident and have a small to moderate size estate, our online Will Package or Living Trust Package can help you establish a comprehensive living trust estate plan in just a few weeks for a very affordable price with one of our attorneys to guide you and follow-up with you. Check it out, get it done, and cross it off the list of things you need to do as a parent.