Each year, many of us make a New Year’s Resolution – maybe it’s to get fit, lose weight, spend time with family. These are all worthwhile but the busyness of daily life seems to get in the way of us actually accomplishing our resolution. So when thinking about this over our extended holiday vacation, I realized that perhaps setting mini-resolutions may be a better way to go. After all, if you set a first goal or resolution that is manageable, maybe others will follow.
So, I have an “easy” one to suggest. If you have not reviewed your estate plan in some time, why don’t you schedule time to review it at home? I seem to be governed by my calendar, and so it would make sense to me that I would block time off maybe one hour to review my documents. What am I doing I’m reviewing? I look at the following:
- The names of my children’s guardians. Are they still a good fit to raise our girls if my wife and I are gone?
- The names of my children’s trustee. Are the trustees able to make sound financial decisions based on my guidance (e.g., exercising discretion to make distributions and selecting an investment portfolio)?
- The time(s) when my children will get funds from their trusts. Am I still comfortable with my children getting control of funds at the predetermined ages in my trust?
- The names of those who will assist my wife and me if we are incapacitated. Do these individuals have the time necessary to pay our bills and make medical decisions?
In effect, I like to review the “who” and the “how” of our planning. Boiling it down to these two simple areas makes my review very manageable. You don’t have to pay us to help you with this review, but we certainly welcome the opportunity to visit with you.
With that New Year’s Resolution checked off, I can now go on to the next one!