It may sound unusual (for an article about wills, etc) but this is a website you should visit: “GetYourS**tTogether.Org”. It was started by a young woman, Chanel Reynolds, who’s husband was killed by a car while bicycling. While trying to deal with the loss, she discovered how chaotic and disorganized their life actually was, although it didn’t seem so. For example, they had taken the time to draft wills but sadly never signed and executed them. She didn’t even know if her husband had life insurance.
Ms. Reynolds’ website has had 500,000 views and her checklists have been downloaded 85,000 times. Interestingly, she is not a lawyer, nor an accountant, nor a professional financial planner. She wants to help keep people from suffering through the same experience she did. She has put life planning and death planning in the same place. While many of us shy away from even the most necessary discussions and planning surrounding our inevitable death, there is less resistance around life planning.
Like Mr. Reynolds, none of us know when we or a loved one could be involved in an accident or illness, which, at best, could wills in a way that someone else (who?) would have to make critical, life-saving decisions, on their behalf. Whether you visit a lawyer, go to a strip mall legal form factory, or download a form, do something. At the least, this will catalyze discussion and, hopefully, action. Get the peace of mind and avoid Mr. Reynolds’ experience. Be sure you have, at a minimum, simple wills, powers of attorney, and directive to physicians (living will).
Source: Alan Farnham, ABC News: http://abcnews.go.com/Business/tragic-death-prompts-unique-financial-planning-website/story?id=18284279&page=2