Back in 2004, the Swedish crime novelist Stieg Larsson passed away suddenly at the age of 50 from a heart attack. Larsson was famous for the book The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo which was very popular, and the book was turned into a movie adding to his notoriety and to his formidable fortune.
It is estimated that at the time of his death the overall value of Larsson’s estate was somewhere in the vicinity of $40 million, and this is said to be conservative.
Stieg Larsson made the mistake of going through life without having executed any estate planning documents at all. He was still a young man at the time of his death and it is logical to assume that he felt as though he would have plenty of time to plan his estate in the future.
Unfortunately, far too many people fail to act for just this reason. The fact is that everyone is day-to-day as they say, and when you fail to make preparations in advance you are putting the people that you love at risk.
Larsson had a live-in girlfriend of 32 years at the time of his death. You have to think that he would have wanted her to inherit at least some of his $40 million. But the way that it turned out is that she was completely disinherited and his estate was awarded to his father and brother.
There really is no excuse for procrastination. If you don’t know where to begin, the intelligent first step would be to sit down and discuss your vision for the future with a licensed, experienced and savvy Suffolk County estate planning lawyer.