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Eliminate the Guesswork: Make Your Final Wishes Known

Mortality is a difficult subject to broach with our loved ones but making your funeral wishes known before you pass away is ultimately in their best interests.  Surprisingly, many people do not provide any kind of instructions for their loved ones to follow after they are gone.  This can cause or exacerbate pain and confusion in the lives of those you leave behind.  Beyond the instructions left in your will about what you want to happen with your property and assets, it is also a good idea to make clear what type of funeral arrangements you want and what should happen to your remains upon your death.

Here are some things to consider to help you make your funeral wishes known to those you leave behind.

Your will should not be the only place you describe your funeral wishes. 

Your will should provide details about how your property should be distributed upon your death and will designate someone to ensure your property is allocated accordingly.  While your will can include specifics about your funeral wishes, it is best to communicate these details elsewhere to ensure they are properly carried out.  Often, by the time a person’s will is located and read, the family will have already made decisions about a memorial and how to part with the deceased’s remains.

Provide specific instructions.

Be sure to consider the details about whether you want a funeral or memorial service, where you want this service to be held and if you would like family and friends to attend.  If you wish to be cremated, be clear about whether or not you would like your ashes to be disposed of or stored and, if so, where.  If you wish to be buried, specify where you would like to be laid to rest. 

Make time to share your wishes with your loved ones.

As difficult as it may seem to talk to your loved ones about your funeral, it’s important to find your own way of expressing your wishes to them before it is too late.  You might prefer to write a document to read over with them or to arrange a specific meeting time and place where you will be comfortable sharing your thoughts.  Communicating with them now will relieve some anxiety in the future and will give your loved ones certainty about what you do and do not want upon your passing.

It can be very difficult to broach the subject of your death with your loved ones but you will ultimately relieve some of their burden by clearly outlining your final wishes now.  Do not underestimate the importance of your funeral arrangement details or the negative consequences that may arise if you don’t make your wishes clear.

Now is the time to be proactive: determine and communicate your funeral wishes to your loved ones as part of your estate planning.

Our Pittsburgh Estate Planning Attorneys will help you plan for the inevitable:

To find out how we at Fingeret Law can help you, please call us at 412.281.8222 or contact us online.



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