I already have my will sorted out with my lawyer. Why should I be interested in Life and Legacy Planning Service and Support?
First: Congratulations! Less than half (45%) of Americans have a will or related documents.
Second: having your will is only a part of the puzzle. Have you made sure beneficiaries exist for all of your banking and retirement accounts? Do you have a plan for your social media accounts? How many automatic payments/debits do you have set up? If you are a small business owner, what happens to your online presence? Have you outlined your wishes for your personal belongings? Pets? Are there questions within your family on who might receive what? Are all of your important documents in a place someone can find them? Who performs regular maintenance on your home? Working together we would answer all these questions, and make sure they reflect you and your wishes, and that your loved ones have that information if/when they need it.
I hope to be a trusted member of your Team—collaborating, as needed, with your financial planner, attorney, accountant, and family or friends to make sure your affairs are in order in the way you want them to be. Your trusted advisors have their specialities, and my value comes in helping bring everything together, and ensure that all the things you “should” do are “done”.
How can Life and Legacy Planning help me NOW?
Life and Legacy Planning creates one central place to consolidate your information—about yourself, your home, your pets, etc. It creates as system for you to easily share important information with others, from information about your pet’s vet with a sitter to ensuring your Medical Proxy has the most recent version of your Advanced Directives, for guidance in case of an accident or sudden illness.
How exactly do you do this?
We will start with a conversation so I can best understand what information and systems you have in place, as well as get a sense of your priorities. As we proceed through sections that cover all facets of your life, we will identify your “Action Items”, and create a customized list with each item—fully broken down into steps—to make the whole process less overwhelming and more approachable. I will give you some tips and guidance to help complete these tasks. If you’d like, we can set up additional appointments to make sure that you are moving forward, and making steps to complete your organizing goals.
So...where does my information go?
Great question! I have purchased licensing from a third party vendor—called Everplans—that has created a wonderful online platform with a secure place to input AND share your information. As a Client of Back Up Your Life™, you receive a complimentary account for one year. (Seriously!) Following the first year, you'll pay the annual subscription fee through Back Up Your Life™. So you not only have continued access to your Everplan, but also access to the additional resources provided by Back Up Your Life™! You can then be on your way to documenting the important information (as much, or as little of it online) so it’s easily accessible to you and your loved ones. The greatest value is using it as a road map to point someone to the precise location of WHERE to find something. I can work with you and your family to make sure you have covered all of your bases, connected with your other trusted advisors, and have peace of mind, no matter what life throws your way.
Do YOU see what clients are uploading? Is there a way to block YOU?
This a personal decision for each, individual client; you have all the power and decision making on what I can see. When I invite clients to use the software, I do so having ZERO access to their information. You can grant me permission to see the the forms you are uploading an the information you are providing. Or, you can limit my access and I will NOT see ANY of your personal information. I am happy to have as much access as you are comfortable with to help you complete your project, or none if you would prefer that I stick to the sidelines and help guide and cheerlead you from there.
Tell me more about security.
Security, particularly as it pertains to the online world, is always top of mind. Everplans uses bank level security and a dual factor authentication option on their accounts. Everything is encrypted so not even their own staff has access to the information that you have inputted. It's even HIPAA Compliant! In the end, it comes down to comfort. How much information would you like to keep online? That decision is completely yours. For example: in lieu of inputting all of your bank account information, you can just share the name of the bank(s) you use, as well as the types of accounts you have there. Just sharing this basic information with your loved ones means they know exactly where to go, and what accounts will exist, if there is ever a need.
I’m interested in this in theory. I want some help to get started, but think I can do most of this on my own.
I hear you! Sometimes we all need a little help to do the things we know we should be doing. Schedule a call with me HERE first. We can discuss the options, and see how I can best support you. You may be a great fit for our Jump Start Package!
I don’t live in the Triangle area. Can we work together virtually?
Absolutely! I look forward to helping my Clients, no matter what their location. We will utilize the wonders of technology and have called via Zoom so we can meet face to face and screen share so we are both literally on the same page.
Do you offer a ‘hard copy’ version of your services? For whom?
I can. But, I strongly encourage each client to have an online component so that your information is eventually easily sharable with your loved ones and trusted advisors. If the software platform is daunting, I am able—on your behalf—to input the information which I am entrusted with. At the end of the input process, I can present a PDF, as well as a hard copy version, so that they will have all the information they would like at their fingertips. I then follow up annually to see if any updates might be needed—then provide a PDF and hard copy once again.
Are you available for maintenance visits?
I would encourage everyone to review their Life and Legacy Plan annually. It’s a great opportunity to make sure all those big (and small!) life changes get documented, so everything is as up to date as possible. Another great time to do a check in is after a substantial life event, such as marriage, having a child, buying/selling a home, moving to a new state.
If we work together, you are going to see all sorts of personal information. What is your confidentiality policy?
As a member of NAPO (National Association of Professional Organizers), I strictly adhere to their Code of Ethics. Among which includes a strong commitment to confidentiality. I will never share any information with anyone else, without your expressed permission. You can find the complete Code of Ethics HERE. That said, when you sign an agreement for us to work together, you can list individuals (either Advisors, or Family Members/Friends, that I can speak with on specific topics, if that is of interest.)
How did you develop this speciality?
I, and many others, know the painful results when loved ones don’t plan for end of life. (More details in MY PERSONAL STORY.) Having your life and legacy planning properly completed means you know your ducks are in a row. You are set up for success, no matter what life might throw your way. You eliminate any guesswork and give friends and family the chance to say: “I’m fulfilling my loved one’s wishes.”
Having all your various account information in one place and easily searchable means that not only will YOU reap the benefit of having a trusted system and knowing where items are, but also those you leave behind will have a much easier time managing your affairs, if you’re ever in a position where you can’t, or once you are gone. These actions are powerful and, in my opinion, the most generous gift you can ever give.