As a practicing estate planning and elder law attorney, I cannot emphasize enough how important I believe it is to preplan your funeral and ensure that your wishes are carried through as much as possible. It is my understanding that preplanning a funeral can be as simple as working out all of the arrangements and details as well as potentially paying for it at today's dollars, or not.
The reason that I believe this is important is because a lot of people will shut down immediately when I tell them that they should preplan their funeral because "they can't afford it." When confronted with that response, I suggest that it still is better to plan for it now and, if you can't pay for it, then it is my understanding that you can assign insurance policies to pay for it and that there are other ways to make payments as well.
The importance of planning and taking that burden off of your family cannot be underestimated. I remember after the passing of my mother at the end of 2015, how much harder that entire experience would have been if we had to plan everything from A to Z.
Fortunately for us, mom preplanned with dad, and all of her wishes were in writing so we knew exactly what she wanted. In her case, she did prepay with an insurance policy, but even if she hadn't, the fact that she went through the process of deciding everything including which casket she wanted, was a stress and burden off of our shoulders that I cannot put into words.
Thus, I would advise those people who say that they can't afford it that now is the time to start saving or to purchase the plan or assign an insurance policy to take care of it. If when you pass away your children or your family have to pay for it personally, that not only adds to the emotional stress, but also creates a financial burden on them. Do yourself and your family a favor and take the time now to make your funeral arrangements in order to relieve a whole lot of stress later.
And if need to get your estate planning taken care sooner rather than later, join us for one of our upcoming workshops.