Procrastinators' Alert: Time to Start End-of-Life Planning
Tuesday, August 30, 2022
August is National Make-a-Will Month, one of many opportunities for Connecticut residents to begin end-of-life planning.
Only around 46% of Americans have a will, a 2% increase from 2016, according to a recent Gallup poll, and 45% have what's known as a "living will," which includes medical-care preferences if they are unable to speak for themselves.
Sam Young, senior director of legacy and planned giving for Compassion & Choices, said it can be easy to put off, because people assume it is too expensive or might be too complicated. But he noted one big reason is, people have a hard time coming to terms with their own mortality.
"It's really hard to have a conversation with someone about their mortality or their death, and COVID has really made us more aware of this," Young pointed out. "It's not just being terminally ill or old; it's unfortunately, any of us can have a situation where we have to face that mortality."
Young explained some people assume their last wishes will be left to their families to decide, or they don't have a lot of assets and figure they would not need a will. He argued both are myths, and only a written will can be used to determine how a person's possessions will be distributed.
There are a bevy of ways to go about making a will. The most common is consulting an attorney. Compassion & Choices partners with Free Will, which Young describes as a no-cost, easy-to-use website, to create a document which must then be witnessed and notarized.
No matter how the will is developed, Young wants to make sure people have one. He feels end-of-life planning is a necessity for everyone.
"It's really an opportunity to create a comfort for you and your family," Young emphasized. "That your memory and your legacy, and the things that are important to you during your life, are in place at the time of your passing."
He added Compassion & Choices also provides online guides for dementia directives, power of attorney, and other end-of-life-related services.
get more stories like this via email
The Iowa League of Women Voters plans to ask the Iowa Legislature to rethink the voting restrictions put in place prior to last month's midterm electi…
Agriculture groups and government agencies aren't slowing down in trying to convince farmers to use more sustainable practices such as cover crops…
Winter is here, leaving many older South Dakotans vulnerable to social isolation. But a growing body of research, as well as opportunities, shows …
By Jala Forest / Broadcast version by Nadia Ramlagan Reporting for the Kent State-Ohio News Connection Collaboration Nearly 40% of college students a…
The Biden administration has proposed a rule to limit methane flaring from oil and gas development on public lands. The rule would impose royalty …
The flu, COVID and RSV are rapidly spreading in Kentucky, and health experts say that's a problem for hospitals, schools and the state's vulnerable …
As its 125th anniversary nears, the Connecticut Audubon Society has released a report detailing the effectiveness of conservation efforts in the …
2022 was a banner year for women elected as governor. Nearly one-third of America's governors will be women next year, which is a record. Iowa …