At LegalWills we were sent a complimentary copy of “Your Legacy of Love” by Gemini Adams as one of our sister sites at PartingWishes.com is listed as a recommended website. There is a great deal of interesting information in this book which describes the importance of leaving an emotional legacy and not just focusing on the estate planning of your material goods. The author started an online survey asking: What would you prefer if one of your parents died: to inherit their wealth or a letter saying how much they loved you? Over 90% expressed a wish for the loving letter. The book explains that
“our real wealth lies not in our Financial Assets, but our Emotional Assets: the stories, lessons, values, image, voice and love that makes us who we are. By sharing these in a legacy of love, we can leave our children, partners, and grandchildren a precious gift they will treasure forever, and: – reduce the suffering for our survivors.”
So, I hear you ask, what does this have to do with writing a Will? I want to address the procrastination excuses of
“I’m not going to be here anyway, so why should I care”
“It’s obvious who will get anything anyway, so I don’t need a Will”.
These are thoughtless attitudes. At a time when your family and loved ones will be struggling the most with your loss, you can help them tremendously by having a Will in place. The difference in having to administer an estate with, or without a Will is night and day. If you have a Will and have named an Executor (and guardian for your children), it can be a relatively straightforward business and your loved ones can receive their instructions and financial inheritance quickly and efficiently. If you don’t have a Will, you have probably left your family with a nightmare. In your everyday life you would unlikely ever show this level of “it’s someone else’s problem” to anybody, certainly not for your family.
Everyone should do the decent thing and not leave their loved ones with a mess to sort out. And once this is in place, spend some time thinking about your emotional legacy. Maybe we’ll cover this more in a future posting.