As the Baby Boomers head into their retirement years, they do so as the largest generation of seniors ever in the United States. That also means that there is the potential for the largest generational transfer of wealth we have ever experienced in the United States. That has experts a little concerned, however, because Baby Boomers don’t appear to be worried about estate planning. A Hauppauge estate planning attorney at the Law Offices of Kobrick & Moccia explains why Baby Boomers appear to be putting off estate planning.
The Caring.com Survey
Caring.com’s conducted a survey last year that indicates 57 percent of U.S. adults do not currently have an estate plan. That figure has remained fairly consistent in recent years, which tells us that the Baby Boomer generation does not appear to be worried about estate planning. Millennials don’t seem too worried either, with only one in five of 18-34-year olds indicating that they have an estate plan in place. Moreover, while 76 percent of all U.S. adults said that having a Will is important, only 40 percent actually have one. The study, conducted earlier this year by SSRS, asked 1,003 adults whether they currently have estate-planning documents in case of their death, as well as the reason why not (if applicable).
Who Does Have a Will and Why Do Others Not Have One?
The survey tells us a little bit more about who is thinking about estate planning. Age plays a huge role in who has a Will with 66 percent of those over 65 reporting that they do have a Will in place compared to 39 percent of 45-54-year olds, and 33 percent of 35-44-year olds. What’s more, most older adults believe that having a long-term estate plan is very important, but most younger adults don’t agree. 65 percent of those 65 and older said they believe having a long-term estate plan is very important while only 36 percent of those between the ages of 18 and 34 said the same.
Those who have a post-graduate college education are twice as likely to have a will as those with only a high school education or less. Specifically, only 28 percent of those who don’t have a college education (high school or less) have a Will or living trust. That number rises to 39 percent for those with a college education, and 58 percent for those with a post-graduate degree.
Of those who indicated that they do not have a Will, the top four reasons given for not having one are:
- “I just haven’t gotten around to it.” (50 percent)
- “I don’t have enough assets to leave to anyone.” (22 percent)
- “I don’t know how.” (6 percent)
- “It’s too expensive.” (6 percent)
If you are among those who have yet to create an estate plan, ask yourself why you have yet to create one. If you are one of the one in five who thinks you lack sufficient assets to justify an estate plan, think again. The quantity and/or value of your assets should never dictate the need for an estate plan. Not only could your assets increase in value, increasing the need for a plan, but you likely care what happens to the assets you do have right now. If you are concerned about the cost, you can rest assured that failing to create an estate plan will almost certainly cost your loved ones significantly more in the long-run than you would spend on creating a basic estate plan now. Finally, you do not need to know how to create an estate plan. You just need to know how to consult with an experienced estate planning attorney – something anyone can do.
Contact a Hauppauge Estate Planning Attorney
Please feel free to download our FREE estate planning worksheet. If you have additional questions or concerns about the need for estate planning, contact a Hauppauge estate planning attorney at the Law Offices of Kobrick & Moccia by calling 800-295-1917 to schedule your appointment.