A few weeks ago I came across this New York Times online article about a woman who had to make organization out of chaos when her husband was hit and seriously injured riding his bicycle.   The article talks about how her necessary quest to organize their disarrayed financial life led to a website that now helps others do the same.  Her situation is not all that uncommon – its thrust upon many families through Michigan and the rest of the country each year.  We don’t know what’s going to happen to us or when it will happen to us, so the old adage of always being prepared is good advice.

But did you know that a comprehensive, well-drafted estate plan can actually help you through the financial and life organization process?  You bet!  Sure, there are forms, online services, and even attorneys who merely prepare forms, but what I’m referring to in a comprehensive plan is something that goes beyond just the legal bare necessities.  For instance, for all of our clients who feel a trust-based estate plan will be best for their family, we help them get a clear picture of what assets they have, how they are owned and whether or not they are coordinated with the plan we’re draft for them.  And if they aren’t, we provide them with a “funding toolkit” that guides them through the process and we followup with them on a regular basis after their plan is signed.  Because as you may have read in this previous blog post, just “having a trust” is not enough . . . the trust must be “funded.”

So, how about you and your family?  Do you know beyond a doubt what you have, whose name it’s in, and who would receive it if something happened to you?  If not, why not let getting a new (or updated) estate plane help you have the clarity you need to have added peace of mind?  Call us at 616-827-7596 and schedule your personal Peace of Mind Planning Session to get started today!

Michael Lichterman is an estate planning and charitable planning attorney who helps families and business owners create a lasting legacy by planning for their Whole Family Wealth™.  This goes beyond merely planning for “stuff” – it’s about who your are and what’s important to you.  He focuses on estate, charitable, and asset protection planning for all generations (“young” and “experienced”), the “sandwich generation” (caring for parents and children), doctors/physicians, nurses, lawyers, dentists, professionals with minor children, family owned businesses, and pet planning.  He enjoys creating life long relationships with his clients centered on their family’s values, insights, stories and experiences.