The coronavirus outbreak has been especially hard on older adults, so having a plan in place can help you and your family rest easier during an uncertain time. However, most people aren’t covered – 72% of people don’t have a will at all.
If coronavirus has convinced you it’s finally time, think twice about doing your planning online. DIY is for face masks, not wills. Cookie-cutter estate plans are for cookie-cutter lives, and what you don’t know can hurt you. Before you spend your time during stay-at-home orders spinning up a new will via the Internet, read a few of these cautionary tales:
- An elderly couple used a $6 power-of-attorney form they found on the internet, but the power of attorney was found to be invalid when the husband became incapacitated. The couple ended up needing to do a guardianship, a much more expensive process that cost them time and frustration – not to mention legal fees and interest on overdue nursing home bills.
- Another elderly couple created two different powers of attorney with documents they found online, but a small error with the date invalidated the entire document at the time they signed it. The result? They had to shell out $60,000 in nursing home costs that they could have avoided otherwise.
- One man’s DIY will forced his surviving girlfriend to leave her home of 30 years after his death, and she received nothing from his estate.
How can you avoid estate planning fails like these? Besides talking to your loved ones about any final wishes you want honored, here’s what should be on your emergency planning checklist. Generation Law’s attorneys are still working remotely, and Illinois’ new remote witnessing and notary laws mean you can get your planning done from home. Give us a call for contactless, professional planning that won’t lead to big regrets later on.