A few years out of law school and still on the “right” side of 30, there are a lot of things I don’t have. For example, I don’t have a house or mortgage, or a wife, or any children.
I also don’t have a will, power of attorney, or any other estate planning documents – yet.
And that’s a mistake.
While there are several things I don’t have, I’m also lucky enough to have retirement savings, investment accounts, and a growing autographed baseball collection (with the recent addition of Hall of Famer Rollie Fingers).
Prior to joining a law firm that excels at estate planning work, I was under the impression that no sane person would consider estate planning prior to that person expecting a child. I have no one to plan for, the thinking goes.
And even if I did, are a couple of bank accounts and some baseballs really enough for it to matter? It’s a trap that I think many people who are just starting careers fall into.
I now know that estate planning is so much more than just addressing the care and protection of children and assets upon someone’s death.
For example, if I am injured, I know who I want to make my healthcare and financial decisions.
But without a healthcare or general durable power of attorney, someone else might end up making those decisions.
And, of course, if I die unexpectedly, having an estate plan would ensure that my desires are carried out, and take a big item off the list of things that my family would need to address in that difficult time.
So I’m bugging my FOS estate planner, to create my plan. What about you?