30 Common Obstacles to Estate Planning

hourglass• It’s too expensive
• My attorney takes care of that
• Planners just want to sell me something
• Too complicated
• It may jeopardize my own financial security
• My children want me to spend it all
• Leaving too much to my children can make them unmotivated
• My children are financially successful already
• My children are financially irresponsible
• I started with nothing
• I don’t like to think about dying
• I’m uncomfortable talking with my children about it
• I don’t want my heirs to know how much I have
• I’m uncomfortable giving my estate away; I might need it later
• All my assets are in a living trust
• All of my property is joint-and-survivor anyway
• Most of my estate is concentrated in one asset (like an IRA or business)
• I’m in a second marriage
• The new tax law eliminates the estate tax anyway
• I bought life insurance to pay the estate tax
• I have enough liquid assets to pay the estate tax
• I’ll just give my estate away during my lifetime
• I want my children to enjoy my estate while I’m alive
• My spouse and I can’t agree
• I’ve already heard it all
• I’m patriotic and I don’t mind paying taxes
• I’ll just leave my estate to charity and not pay any tax
• I don’t know how to equalize my estate so that it’s fair
• I don’t know who to listen to

My Comments: I can’t tell you how many people I’ve talked with over the years who recently lost a parent and are totally exasperated and angry about the lack of planning by their parents. And many of the parents followed the mindless stupidity evidenced by many of those comments above. It’s one thing to be ignorant and uninformed, but another to be stubborn and stupid. It leaves hard feelings that simply need not be there.