(Image via mercado-hartung.com)
We all have plans and dreams for the future. Many times, those of us with chronic illnesses see our plans and dreams change or end due to our illnesses. But, something many people are hesitant to think about is estate and financial planning.
The week of October 17 – 23, 2011 is designated National Estate Planning Awareness Week. Forbes.com has an article about estate and financial planning. The article highlights the work of estate planner Marty Shenkman, whose wife Patti was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in 2006. They wanted to customize Patti’s financial and estate plans, but found that they couldn’t. So Marty created different ways.
As part of National Estate Planning Awareness Week, Marty is sharing his knowledge of estate planning for those with a chronic illness webinar titled “Estate and Financial Planning For People Living With Multiple Sclerosis.” Even though it is titled for people with MS, it would benefit anyone with a chronic illness. The following are the 12 steps for estate and financial planning that will be discussed in the webinar.
- Organize your emergency information and information about your advisors.
- Designate a person to handle your financial and legal issues by creating a power of attorney.
- Designate a person to make health care decisions and access medical records by creating a health care proxy.
- Communicate your health care wishes by creating a living will.
- Protect your minor children with an emergency child medical form.
- Sign a will.
- Create a personalized (not boilerplate) revocable living trust to manage your assets during your disability or illness.
- Ensure that your insurance coverage is in order.
- File your beneficiary designations and confirm title to your accounts.
- Give back so you can demonstrate important values to heirs, help others, and inspire others.
- Communicate your estate and financial plan to your advisors, family, and friends.
- Review, revisit, and revise your plan so it can continue to protect you.
The Forbes.com article also has links to a variety of resources for those who want more information. Also, this press release lists other webinars Marty is involved with during the week for consumers and professionals to help with estate and financial planning for those with chronic illness.
Have you planned for the future or have you been putting it off for another day?