Many people only starting thinking about estate planning once they reach retirement age.

After all, the “normal” progression of life is to get out of school, get a job, get married, have kids, get your kids through college, retire, become grandparents, enjoy life…and then, after a long and fulfilling life, we know that we will eventually die.

But we know that life rarely follows the “normal” course.  People get divorced, remarried, have children and don’t get married, don’t get married or start families.  Life is all about options, choices and the whims of fate.

Unfortunately, dying is not an option.  Most people won’t choose when or how it will happen.  We leave our homes and drive our cars knowing we are at risk of a fatal or debilitating accident.  Some people don’t leave their homes.  But CO2 poisoning and fires cause hundreds of fatalities every year.  Lives are taken every year by random acts of violence and drunk drivers, young and old.  Athletes in incredible condition have passed during practice.  And people of all ages are suffering from cancer and other illnesses.  I don’t say this to scare anyone, but to remind us that life happens – regardless of age, race, religion or economic status.

Of course we take all of the precautions we can and extend our lives as long as possible.  We service our cars, and use smoke and CO2 detectors at home.  We are vigilant and aware of our surroundings, and avoid potentially dangerous situations.  We eat healthy, exercise and get regular health screenings.  We know these aren’t guarantees, but they absolutely give us some peace of mind that we’re doing the best we can.

It’s a great thing and a wonderful feeling to know that we’re doing the best we can for our lives and the lives of our loved ones.  But in our efforts to do the best we can with today, we often neglect to think about tomorrow.  But what if tomorrow isn’t like today?  Very few of us will follow the “normal” course of life.  What would happen to you and your loved ones if you passed? Would there be enough money to support your loved ones the way you would want? Will the right people inherit your assets, or might they get tied up in a messy court battle?  Would young beneficiaries become self destructive with a large inheritance?

Wouldn’t it be better to make sure that the people who matter most are cared for the way you want?

Planning for your loved ones today doesn’t mean that you’ll pass tomorrow, just as buying car insurance doesn’t mean you’ll wreck your car tomorrow.  By planning your estate today, you won’t have to worry about what could happen to your family if life doesn’t follow the “normal” path.  It’s called peace of mind… and you can have it.  The best time to plan your estate is right now!  Call Scottsdale trust attorney Abigail Neal at (480) 699-7992 to create a plan customized to your family’s unique needs.