Estate Planning:

Dear Advisor, Stop telling me to get my Estate Plan done! 

Matt Morris07-30-2020

An open letter from clients to their advisors.

Dear Advisor,

For the last few years we have ended our review meeting with you asking if I have gotten my estate plan done yet and my admission that I have not.  You then remind me why it’s important and I agree.  We finish up our little routine with my head low and I promise “This year.”

I want to admit here and now, I have been lying!  Of course I know I need an estate plan and it really bothers me not having one.  I decided to write this letter to admit the truth. I am procrastinating because I do not want to go through the process that you have suggested to get this document created.  I have never even called the referral attorney you provided.

It’s time to come out and tell you why I am going to procrastinate again this year even though I know I shouldn’t!

An estate plan is going to be a lot of time and effort, the thought is overwhelming.

I am going to have to explain all the details of my life to this person to give them context of my situation before we even can get to the primary questions.  I am going to pay hundreds of dollars per hour to give them the context you already have.  I am also going to need to organize a ton of information to prepare for the conversation.  I’m just so busy with other things.  

I am really uncomfortable going to a stranger and having an intimate conversation about death, end of life, and my family dynamics.

Death sucks. Discussing it with a complete stranger in a transactional relationship is not high on my list of things I would like to do.  Whether or not to be resuscitated, my kids and grandkids after I am gone, and how to handle some of our unique family dynamics is hard.  So I’m going to pass for now.

It seems so complicated, intimidating, and intentionally confusing.

Do you ever notice how attorneys can tend to take the simple and make it overly complex, arduous, and confusing?  I am not looking forward to that.  I don’t like looking like I don’t know anything in front of someone I just met. It’s intimidating and confusing.  Does there need to be so much Latin involved?

It’s expensive! I am going to pay thousands of dollars for a document I may never even use.

Estate Plans are mostly templates, why is it going to cost me thousands of dollars to populate a template with my decisions?  I can think of hundreds of other things I would prefer to do with that money.  Since I have no intention of dying any time soon, I figure I can do it… next year.  Preferably, I’ll wait until I get a terminal diagnosis from my doctor. 

I know it’s important and there’s a lot of peace of mind to be gained, but it’s just not that urgent.

It’s kind of like my financial plan actually.  I put that off for years too. Until I met you.

I want to be honest and tell you if this is my only option it’s probably going to be a few more years of this routine we have at the end of our meeting.

If you happen to find a better solution let me know and I’d be willing to get this done sooner.


Your Client

Matt Morris

Matt Morris