Many people go through life feeling as though the time for engaging in estate planning is “later.” To be fair, it is natural for people to procrastinate about the things that they don’t especially want to think about and those that would not seem to be immediately relevant. However, the thing about estate planning is that if you put it off, you are taking a calculated risk. Many would say that if they choose to take a risk it is their business, but estate planning is unique because you’re not gambling with your own well-being; you’re putting the well-being of your loved ones at risk.
It could be logically suggested that the time to take estate planning seriously is on the day that you become a self-supporting adult. Even if you are single, it is something to consider because everyone has some personal property of value; be it monetary or sentimental. But in addition to this, there is a health care consideration as well.
When you think back to the highly publicized case of Terri Schiavo, who fell into a coma when she was just 26 years of age, you see a profound example of exactly why it is important for people of all ages to have advance health care directives in place. Ms. Schiavo was being kept alive through the use of feeding tubes for years when her husband wanted them removed, but her parents objected to this. A lengthy legal battle ensued, but it could have been avoided, and Ms. Schiavo’s wishes would have been carried out, if she would have executed a living will stating her preferences.
Estate planning is even more important for younger married couples, especially those with children. You must make sure that you have sufficient life insurance in place, and the matter of guardianship of your child or children should you and your spouse pass away together in an accident is also something that has to be addressed.
Simply put, estate planning is a basic responsibility that goes along with adulthood, and it is something that everyone should take seriously.