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Grief & Loss

The Healing Process: Preparing to Die

Death is the inevitable end for all of us. There is no other way out. Some people welcome it and others are afraid of the unknown. Most people aren't afraid of being dead, but of how they will die. Before faced with our final days it is important to plan, make choices and take responsibility for the end of your life.

There are many things to plan for, including your personal property, paying final bills, distributions of your material goods, property and money if you are leaving some. Burial or cremation, where etc. The dead have no rights, so make your wishes known before you die. If you have a large estate consider getting a Revocable Living Trust. You will need to go to an attorney who specializes in Estate Planning. This document not only hedges estate taxes for your heirs, but specifies your wishes after your gone, and you retain complete control while you are alive.

Another serious consideration is your final wishes if you become physically incapacitated. Remember Terry Schivo! You need to prepare documents to specify your wishes for your health care, resuscitation, organ donation, etc. A health care Power of Attorney will give your trusted caretaker the power to carry out your wishes if you are unable to do so.

If you are old enough to read this you are old enough to begin planning. We never know when we will die.

Eight Things to Consider in Preparing for Your Death:
  1. Plan to dispose of your assets. Consider a revocable living trust if your estate is over $600,000. Prepare a will if under $600,000. You will need a lawyer for this.

  2. Consider burial options. Burial, Cremation, Disposal of ashes etc. Buy a plot or crypt for your ashes if this is your choice.

  3. Appoint a trusted person to make health care decisions if you are incapacitated and cannot make choices for yourself. Execute a health care Power Of Attorney.

  4. Get all your important papers together and go over them with the Executor of your Will or Trust, give him, her copies and put the originals in a safe place.

  5. Consider buying long term care insurance in the event you need Nursing Home Care the younger you are when you buy it, the cheaper the premiums on the Policy.

  6. Get and sign a Living Will from your State, every State has a different one. Call your Local State Department for an up-to-date copy. Keep it current. This is about your desire for "Heroic Measures" in a medical crisis regarding reviving you.

  7. Get all your important papers together; including Insurance Policies, Bank and Savings Accounts, Birth Certificate, Social Security information, Will, Living Trust, Organ Donation wishes and anything else that will make it easier for your Executor of your Estate. Put them in a SAFE PLACE, Consider a Bank Safe Deposit Box.

  8. Discuss your plans and wishes with your family members, significant others and anyone who will have decision-making powers after you are gone.