As a senior adult, are you wondering how to say “I love you” to your family, especially as we enjoy Valentine’s Day during the month of February? Most of us realize, the best way to convey how we feel is just to say the words and act with love on a daily basis. However, sometimes we want to communicate these important words to our spouses, children and family in regard to planning for the future.

One powerful way to say “I love you” to your spouse and family is to begin estate planning for you and your spouse. When completed thoughtfully and thoroughly, with your Wisconsin estate planning attorney, estate planning means your family will not have to guess at your wishes. Your spouse and family will also not have to go through lengthy court procedures, challenges with creditors or be without an advocate when you are no longer here. We know that it can be stressful to think about life after your death, but estate planning is critical to ensure that the sorrow your loved ones feel is not compounded by a crisis that could have been avoided.

During the month of February, and especially this Valentine’s Day, we would like you to consider these five ways to say “I Love You” with estate planning:

1. Give your family a solid future. Take action now to limit the reach of creditors to your estate, maximize your assets and set guidelines to make sure your spouse is provided for in your absence and your children have funding for their education.

2. Give your family the gift of little or no conflict. By selecting your decision makers now, while you have capacity, you will limit or eliminate the chance of arguments. Your loved ones will then be able to focus on dealing with their grief instead of wasting time fighting over what your wishes might have been.

3. Tough choices made by you now will lessen any uncertainty. It will be very hard for your family members to make well-reasoned decisions during these difficult emotional times. By making those tough choices, while you have capacity, you will take the burden of responsibility for any choices needed off the shoulders of your loved ones.

4. Relieve the stress you and your family will have. With your estate planning you can be sure that all of your end of life decisions are your own, not made by someone else. In addition, you will relieve the burden and stress of these end of life decisions having to be borne by anyone in your family

5. Say “I love you” by giving your family the peace to focus on what matters. It will mean everything to your family when the planning you have put in place needs to be implemented. The knowledge of knowing you have taken care of everything from health care decision making and finances to taxes and wealth transfer strategies will give them peace of mind when it matters most. It is definitely one of the best ways to say “I love you” to your spouse and family.

Remember, at the end of the day, estate planning is not just for you. Instead, it is for the ones you love most. If we can answer any questions for you on putting this estate planning in place, please do not hesitate to let us know. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting with attorney Alan Hougum today.