• Margaret M. Cook

Estate Planning During a Pandemic: Now is the Time to Plan


COVID-19 has shown everyone just how precious and short life really is. It’s shown our country how quickly our normal routine can be uprooted, and how rapidly things can change.

An estate plan is on everyone’s to-do list, but many have yet to cross it off their list. Now more than ever, is a great time to assure your estate plan is in place. Social distancing has given everyone more time to complete the items on their to-do lists. Why not come out of the pandemic with your estate plan crossed off your list.

An estate plan is vital to everyone, but right now especially to those individuals who are categorized as high-risk or essential workers who encounter individuals whether sick or not on a daily basis.

Many essential workers are individuals with young families. If you are an essential worker and get sick, is your family protected? Do you have a guardian named for your children? Do you have the necessary documents in place to allow your spouse or loved ones to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf?

If you have minor children, it is extremely important you have a will in place that names legal guardians for your children in the event something happens to you. If you do not have a Will, the only way to obtain a guardian for your children, is to have one appointed by the Court. With most Courts closed to the public and only hearing limited cases, it is much easier right now and far more cost effective to have a simple Will drawn up.

If you're considered high-risk or an essential worker, you should have the following documents in place at a minimum:

  1. Last Will and Testament

  2. Financial Power of Attorney

  3. Health Care Directive

At Ward & Oehler we are here to help. We have made it simpler than ever to do your estate planning remotely. We have a link to our electronic estate planning intake form on our website. You can complete this form from the comfort of your own home, and it will be sent directly to your attorney for review. Our attorneys can then schedule your initial meeting by phone or Zoom. It is already our practice to send documents to clients to review electronically. We can either send documents via email or through our secure portal. Once you have reviewed your estate plan documents and had a chance to ask us any questions, we can schedule an appointment for you to sign everything after May 4, or once the virus settles down. If it is an emergency or you are high-risk or an essential worker, we are happy to schedule your signing appointment sooner.

When the world returns to normal you will not regret having the peace of mind of your affairs being in order. Not to mention it will allow you to regain some control in these uncertain times. Contact or office today at (507) 288-5567 or schedule an appointment online to discuss your family's estate planning needs.


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