Given life's unpredictability, doesn't planning make sense?

“[L]ife got in the way.”

Such a development is something that virtually all of us of a certain age and maturity well understand and appreciate.

Life is, quite simply, full of darts and feints. We plan for A, but then B suddenly occurs. We think we’ll end up taking a left, but then we suddenly find ourselves on a right-bound course. Some of us never planned on getting married, but now find ourselves happily betrothed and with several children. Some of us seemed destined for perpetual youth and health, but now nagging illnesses have beset us.

The point, as noted in a recent article on estate planning and unexpected contingencies, is this: “Tomorrow is not promised.”

And that means — for all of us, regardless of age, job status, health or other personal traits or factors — that the best-intentioned plans of today might never be realized in the future if they are not seen through to completion in a timely manner.

That fundamental truth about life and death is underscored in the above-cited article, in which a financial planner laments not following through with dispatch and resolution on estate planning details discussed with a client and cherished friend.

Indeed, the plan was there, well-tailored and making optimal sense for the client. Unfortunately, though, and in an entirely unforeseen manner, she suddenly passed away. The adviser did not want to be seen as pushing the plan forward in an unseemly or aggressive manner. He rued that reticence following her death, vowing to be more persistent with clients in the future about their need to finish important tasks.

His message to everyone who is contemplating an estate plan or currently working on one is both earnest and thoughtful.

“Planning is important,” he notes, “but taking action is vital.”

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