No matter how young or how healthy you think you are, you could unexpectedly take your last breath. Accidental death or the consequences of an undiagnosed illness can hit you suddenly, wreaking havoc in everyone’s life. It’s so very important to ensure you have plans for your final arrangements. That includes a Last Will and Testament, a Healthcare Directive (which specifies your desires if you should end up in a vegetative state and is also known as an Advanced Directive or a Living Will), and a Healthcare Power-of-Attorney (which names a specific individual to make healthcare decision on your behalf if you are unable to do so for yourself), and if you own any property, such as a car, house, or financial holdings, you also need a Living Trust. A Living Trust saves you the hassle of probate, which can delay the release of your property to your loved ones in a timely manner. It may sound complicated, but it’s actually quite simple to create these documents. While you can handle it very easily yourself without a professional, it is worth the expense to seek a legal or financial advisor to make sure you comply with the laws of your state. The laws can vary greatly from one jurisdiction to another.
This is a topic that many people avoid, as it can be painful. But this is something you need to seriously discuss with your loved ones and get your wishes in writing as soon a possible. You also need to be sure that the proper people know where to find those papers should they need them. While we’re discussing it, be sure to have ample amounts of life insurance to help cover the final arrangements as well as cover any mortgage, car payments, and other essential bills that may be left behind. If you’re the primary or sole breadwinner, your insurance policy should include some extra coverage to help them adjust to your lost income.
I discussed this with a few friends and associates, some of whom felt they didn’t need to worry about this sort of thing. Well, I’m here to tell you that everyone needs to worry about it. Death is inevitable. It could be tomorrow, next year, or 30 years from now, and it may not always be the result of a long, terminal illness. It will give you peace of mind realizing that you have properly taken care of your loved ones.
“No one knows the day or hour when our life will end, not even the angels in heaven or the Son himself. Only the Father knows.” (Matthew 24:36)