The pandemic represented a seismic shift in the way that many people view their estate plans. Those who did not have documents like powers of attorney and will in place flocked to estate planning lawyers to create these, but other factors have made estate planning more challenging in recent years.
The main areas of risk as perceived by people in the United States has changed since the beginning of the pandemic. For example, at the outset of the pandemic, family conflict was the greatest threat to estate planning but this has now been surpassed by the risks associated with prolonged life expectancy and health care costs.
In fact, health care costs and prolonged life expectancy was named as the number one threat by three times the percentage of people who reported those concerns in 2019. Many people have become more aware of the rising costs of expenses associated with long term care, especially if their loved ones had to move into assisted living or nursing homes in this past year.
Family conflict dropped from around one quarter of respondents down to 10% in the last year.
Family conflict can still remain a potential risk to your estate plan as it relates to blended families. As a result of the pandemic, divorce rates skyrocketed, difficult family decisions had to be faced and made and priorities shifted overall. This may have caused you to rethink your estate plan and your other strategies. Going forward, scheduling a consultation with an experienced estate planning lawyer in New Jersey can help you to accomplish your personal goals.