Estate Planning by the Numbers (Infographic)

Having a will is the most basic step you can take in planning your estate. Without this document in place, it’s up to the government to decide how to divvy up your assets. Despite this, our recent survey reveals that nearly six in 10 adults in the U.S. still doesn’t have a will.

And according to the survey, many also lack a healthcare power of attorney – another crucial legal tool that lets you choose the person who will make medical decisions for you if and when you are unable to do so.

Our infographic includes some key findings from the survey and more on why you need estate planning documents.

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5 months, said...

This article is right – if we don’t want the govt. to decide how our estate is divided up, we need to leave a will, with equitable estate planning. Abut according to several recent surveys, roughly 60% of Americans don ‘t leave a will when they die, they also lack a healthcare power of attorney – a legal tool that allows us to choose who will make medical decisions for us if or when we’re incapacitated, in hospital, or whatever. So be it. I write this off to superstition, or the fact that none of us think we’re ever really going to die… especially not in our 50s or 60s or 70s. Or 80s for that matter, unless we’re really ill I suppose. Personally, I don’t care for do-it-yourself wills purchased online… Without an estate attorney involved, we can miss critical points; name the wrong executor; compute assets and inheritance distribution incorrectly, or unfairly, so it can be over-turned or successfully contested, or side-stepped by greedy, badly motivated heirs and/or executors later on, when we’re long gone. Plus, I think heirs and executors who are the anti-lawyer do-it-yourself type tend to avoid attorneys altogether – and often wind up later on in an estate going through probate perhaps, dealing with problems and mistakes, incorrect document filings, missed deadlines, etc. And this causes, I believe, stress and tensions and/or conflicts later on among heirs. And a lot of these middle class stressed out heirs or beneficiaries, from what I have seen over the past couple of decades, interestingly enough, get to a point where they feel they have to get inheritance advance rates, or inheritance loan fees… to get a loan on inheritance, a probate advance or inheritance loan, probate loan, a modest estate advance or fast inheritance cash advance, to feel more secure… often just to make themselves feel better, more confident... from one of the better known inheritance advance or inheritance loan companies like, or, or maybe; an advance against inheritance, the ability to borrow money against inheritance, to get an inheritance advance… Usually real fast inheritance loans, probate loans, estate loans, probate advance or inheritance advance assignments – usually we’re talking about middle class or upper middle class heirs… who don’t have wealthy parents to lean on. Who have to lean on themselves. And so they take advantage of a solution like this.