We live during an era when people live very busy lives, and when you are always on the go and reacting to the things that take place on a day-to-day basis time can get past you rather quickly. A lot of people will tell you that they know they have to plan for the future and they have every intention of doing so. But the days turn into weeks, weeks turn into months, months turn into years, and years turn into decades and too many wind up putting their families in a difficult situation due to a lack of preparation for the future.
This may sound like idle speculation, but the facts indicate that the majority of Americans have not made any plans at all for the latter portion of their lives and eventual passing. A Harris interactive survey that was released late in 2009 painted a rather grim picture. Only 35% of the people who participated in the survey had drawn up a last will to elucidate their wishes with regard to the eventual distribution of their assets to their loved ones after their deaths.
Though you would expect people who are younger to perhaps procrastinate when it comes estate planning or feel as though they simply have plenty of time to do it in the future, a surprising number of older Americans were totally unprepared. Some 23% of people who were older than 55 years of age said that they had not executed any estate planning documents all.
19% of the people who did not have an estate plan said that the reason for this was because they didn’t feel as though they had enough assets to be concerned about it. What they may not be taking into consideration is the fact that execution of advance health care directives stating your wishes regarding medical procedures is essential regardless of the extent of your resources.
The bottom line is this: Estate planning is important for everyone, and if you are not currently prepared for the future you may want to take action and arrange for a consultation with an experienced estate planning attorney sooner rather than later.