Estate Planning is for everyone . . . including you

Estate Planning is for everyone . . . including you

December 20, 2022

As the end of the calendar year approaches, it is natural to reflect on life, take stock of where you are and consider making plans for 2023 and beyond.

Some statistics reflect that as few as 30 percent of Americans currently have a valid will. The same is true for other key estate planning tools such as a health care proxy and power of attorney. If you are among the 70 percent of Americans without these documents in place, your situation likely falls under one of three categories:

  1. You believe you do not need a will.
  2. You are busy with the everyday chaos of life, and estate planning is something you plan to get to “someday.”
  3. You do not want to talk about, consider or plan for your own demise.


The reality is:

  1. Wills are not only for the rich, or people who own their own homes, or those with large families. A will, and the other estate planning documents, simply ensures that your wishes are carried out and there is no ambiguity as to what your wishes were.
  2. Estate planning can make a world of difference for your loved ones. The internet is full of examples of people who died without a will resulting in significant adverse financial, legal and personal consequences for the family that is left behind. If you wait to create your estate planning documents until you have time, they will likely never get done.
  3. Estate planning is the best way to prepare for any of life’s events.  We hope that the worst events never happen, but we have a plan even if they do.

Our attorneys work with clients every day to establish, update and honor their estate plans.

  • Drafting a will is not complicated. Our attorneys have prepared thousands of wills. We guide our clients every step of the way, prepare the documents, review them with the clients, and make updates as needed before signing.
  • You can change your will.  Clients sometimes express hesitation in drafting a will because they are afraid it will lock in decisions. The truth is, life evolves and circumstances change, and you can update your will to reflect those changes.
  • Preparing these documents does not have to be prohibitively expensive. For most people, the cost of basic estate planning is very reasonable.

If you do not have a will (or perhaps have one that is very outdated), give me or any member of our estate planning practice group a call. We are here to answer your questions and guide you through the process of drafting the proper estate plan to meet your goals.

Katherine Liebner is an attorney at Gross Shuman P.C. Ms. Liebner focuses her practice in the areas of estate planning, estate and trust administration, and labor and employment law. She can be reached at 716.854.4300 ext. 236 or [email protected]