Thanksgiving is a time for giving thanks and for community with family and friends.
While 2020 has been a difficult year for many of us, there is still much for which we can be grateful. As we gather around the Thanksgiving table with our loved ones, let’s be grateful for the food on our table and the companionship of our loved ones around us, both those seated at the table and those joining us electronically.
While the pandemic has altered this traditional holiday and the way many of us are celebrating, the core of this uniquely American holiday is unaltered. We give thanks for the many blessings we have.
Thanksgiving is a good time to thank those whom you’ve asked to play a role in your estate plan. Many trusted people play a role in your estate plan. A typical estate plan has successor trustees who carry out your wishes expressed in your trust when you’re unable to act as trustee. In a typical plan, you’d have agents who would make decisions for you under a Financial Power of Attorney when you’re unable to make your own financial decisions. You’d have agents who’d make decisions for you under a Healthcare Power of Attorney when you’re unable to make those decisions yourself. Finally, you’d have personal representatives who’d make sure the wishes expressed in your Will are carried out and Guardians whom you’ve nominated to care for any minor children.
While you can have a wonderful estate plan, it takes the people whom you’ve trusted to play a part in your plan to carry out the wishes you’ve expressed in your plan. Thanksgiving is a great time to remind them of the role they’ve agreed to play and to thank them for playing such an important and trusted role in your life.
Thanksgiving is a special time of the year. We stop and reflect on our lives and the people in it who bring our life meaning. While this year has brought hardships to many, it also shows us just how precious our loved ones are. Be sure to thank your loved ones for being a special part of your life.
Stephen C. Hartnett, J.D., LL.M.
Director of Education
American Academy of Estate Planning Attorneys, Inc.
9444 Balboa Avenue, Suite 300
San Diego, California 92123
Phone: (858) 453-2128