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Recent Survey Indicates More than Half of American Adults Don’t Have a Will

A recent survey from Caring.com found that only about 42 percent of American adults have an estate planning document like a will or living trust established. Of adults with children under the age of 18, only 36 percent have estate plans in place.

It is understandable to be hesitant about planning for the end of your life, especially when you feel young and healthy. But death is an inevitability for which we all must be prepared — and the estate planning process does not have to be difficult.

What is keeping people from making estate plans?

The survey was conducted in January 2017 by Princeton Survey Research Associates International. Researchers asked just over 1,000 adults if they had estate planning documents in place, and if not, why they didn’t. About 47 percent of respondents who did not have estate planning documents said they simply haven’t gotten around to it yet.

Older Americans were more likely to have engaged in the estate planning process. Approximately 81 percent of people 72 or older have a will or trust. However, the younger the respondents got, the less likely they were to have one. A whopping 78 percent of Millennials (ages 18 to 36) did not have a will, and approximately 40 percent of people between 53 and 71 also lacked one.

There are a couple issues that may point to this age disparity. For one, younger Americans are not as concerned with their mortality as older Americans and tend not to believe they need a will until later in life. They also have fewer assets than older people, which leads them to think (often incorrectly) that a will would not be of much use to them.

For more information about establishing a last will and testament, speak with a skilled Florida estate planning lawyer at The Charles Law Offices today.

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