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Audi estate planning
>Date: Tue, 28 Dec 1999 18:56:10 -0800
>From: "Avi Meron" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
>Subject: Q, give away, after death
>Boys and girls,
>As I was working on my car today, (new bumper and some modifications to the
>lights) a thought crossed my mind, what will happen to my Q after I die,
>I figure the above will be the best way to take care of the Q and leave it
>in very good hands.........
>All comments are welcome, good or bad,
>As a side note, as of today I have no knowledge of my impending death, nor
>do I have a terminal sickness that I am aware of.
Avi, you have too much time on your hands . . . (G!)
While estate planning is about as much fun as a root canal, it is something
everyone should look into. Even though none of us plan to die, we all will
(except me, and ONE of you out there, and you know who you are . . . ).
The problem is exactly as Avi states it: No one knows what my "stuff" is
It has been my experience that in estate situations, things change hands
for FAR less than their worth. Example - a guy I knew was killed in an
accident - he had four Honda S-600 convertibles, some ran, some for parts,
package was sold for $250 by his parents. I bought a 95 Geo Metro in 97 for
$1,500; estate sale. Owner died of drinking too much, too often, for too
many years. I once admired someone's brand new Dodge Van, and joked "Hey,
put me in your will for that!" - AND HE DID! Three months later, I got a
brand new 1973 Dodge Van with 1,200 miles on it for exactly nothing . . .
My wife-the-lawyer sees estate settlements from time to time - houses tied
up in probate for years, falling apart because there's no way to maintain
them, repo'ed by the lender (if there's a mortgage) or taken for unpaid
taxes, then sold for a fraction of what they are worth, and almost none of
the proceeds goes to the survivors. Many estates come up short after
everything is sold, and mostly because provision wasn't made for the costs
of transition. Bank accounts are often taken by banks because of
"inactivity" - well just because I die, I'm not leaving my money to the
****ing bank, dude!
No one knows the date of their demise in advance, and once demised, it is
(obviously) too late to change anything. If we don't make some plans, all
the "stuff" we have lovingly collected, worked on, hoarded, cherished,
etc., will just evaporate as our estates are liquidated, often by people
who know us only as a file or a bookkeeping entry.
At least make a list of your "stuff" and who you'd like each item to go to
- it clears your head, and makes you reflect on what things and which
people are REALLY important in your life. Then file the list somewhere that
it can be found! Next, take the list and turn it into a formal will - some
states don't accept a will unless it is in the correct form - and you don't
have the time to find a lawyer at the last moment!
Personally, I plan to turn it all into asbestos traveler's checks, and take
it with me. And if they don't take American Express where I'm going, I'm
not going at all.
Best Regards, happy new year, happy new millenium, and happy Y2K,