“The only certainties in life are death and taxes.” That oft-heard comment is, from my experience, very true.
Well, if it is a certainty that we will one day die, why are we not planning for it? Likely because our cultural fear of death here in North America stuns many of us into a stupor of non-action.
Here is the point as I see it:
Even if we’re afraid of the topic, it is a clear eventuality that either we plan for or we don’t. The consequences of not planning are well known -- confusion, chaos, bickering, bad decision making and expensive funeral arrangements with accompanying buyer’s remorse.
They are all part and parcel of our failure to plan and prepare. Families are known to have such awful fights over the end of life issues that irreparable damage is done to one and all.
The solution is simple: get informed on end of life issues. Prepare for the end of life by getting all your paperwork together in one place and then simply rest in ease knowing that you have taken care of a very important part of life.
So go ahead and create an “All Ready to Go Binder” that will be a collection place for all your end of life paperwork. It can include, but is not limited to, the following tabs:
- Last will and testament
- Power of attorney
- Representation agreement
- Advanced care directives
- Memorial Society funeral arrangement form
- Celebration of life plan
- Life insurance policy recap
- Expected letter of death in the home
- People to call list
- List of financial holdings
- Copies of personal identification
- Last reviewed record
By creating your own All Ready to Go Binder you ensure you and your family are well aware of any and all end of life matters that concern your death. The binder is a conversation piece that you can use as a guide as you walk your family through the important end of life topics they need to be aware of well in advance of death.
The binder, a collection point for you, is a planning tool that can be revisited on a regular basis to ensure your plans stay current with your potentially changing wishes.
Being well prepared for the end of your life is a generous gift for your surviving family members.