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Getting older should be a prompt to begin estate planning

Getting older is a natural part of life and the number of older Americans will grow exponentially in the next few years as the majority of baby boomers in Massachusetts and around the country reach retirement age. Contemplating one's mortality is not easy but procrastination where estate planning is concerned is not the way to approach it. Failure to plan for the future could result in unintended consequences including the bulk of one's estate being gobbled up by nursing homes.

January is often seen as a month of goal setting. This can include setting a goal to lose weight, exercise more, eat better and so on. Setting a goal to address estate planning can put one on the path to ensuring that one's final wishes are expressed to family members and legally documented so that they can be carried out at a person's passing.

While the task of creating a plan may appear overwhelming at the start, it can also be looked at as a labor of love that will answer questions for loved ones at a difficult time. It allows a person to direct the assets accumulated over a lifetime to the people and causes that mattered most to that person in life. It allows a person to leave a legacy.

No one gets out of this life alive. Planning for one's life is important and planning for one's death should be no less important. A first step might be a family discussion around where a person wants his or her assets to go and the reasoning behind the decision. Once the decision is made, a consultation with a Massachusetts attorney experienced in estate planning can get one on the right path to having a comprehensive plan in place.

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