In his post, Quentin Fottrell responds to the worries of a married man with much wealth that he fears could end up in the wrong hands after he passes away, creating stress for his wife, as well as what happens after they both have died. Fottrell urges planning now to avoid future conflict and carefully explaining relevant assets and accounts to his wife in preparation for the possibility that he dies before her. He goes on,
It’s fine to select a lawyer that you may not know personally, but you should do some snooping on sites like Avvo.com and Lawyers.com or, better yet, consult with the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys and the National Association of Estate Planners & Councils. Word of mouth is invaluable: Ask friends and extended family. Once again, avoid any necessity for an 11th hour paper chase after you’re gone. It will make the process run more smoothly and cheaply too.
There are other, unforeseen issues that you should take into account. “Your estate plans should anticipate the unlikely event that spouses pass simultaneously or a surviving spouse does not have mental capacity to handle their affairs,” according to Rocket Lawyer, an online resource for legal advice. “In those circumstances, you need to have an alternate executor, trustee, and/or power of attorney in place.”
Above all, you are actually making a will and know what you want to do with your money, which is 99% of the battle. You’d be surprised by how many relatives you’d suddenly have if you died without leaving one, and the kind of chaos that can bring. And you are spared the drama of dealing with adult children who may see dollar signs and each make individual pitches about (or demand) how much they would like and how they would like it.
Read his full opinion here: My wife and I don’t trust anyone to be executor of our will
Posted by Allison Trupp, Associate Editor, Wealth Strategies Journal