End of Life Planning

End of Life Planning

End of life planning is important, but that doesn’t mean it’s always simple. From a realistic standpoint, the notion of preparing for the end just means you’re making easy what could one day be a very heavy weight for your loved ones. The guarantee an Estate Plan gives you, your loved ones and the legacy you’re leaving behind is more valuable than you might think. Whereas simply having a Will may not be sufficient, a complete, thorough Estate Plan that includes your end of life desires can protect your legacy and more importantly, your family. Do you have questions about what you need to do and what steps you need to take in order to create your end of life plan?

What is End of Life Planning?

End of life planning is the element of your Estate Plan that makes formal and makes known your desires about what you wish to have happen when you’re coming to the last stages of your life. Occasionally, we’re unable to suitably express what we are wanting when we come to this stage. Therefore, we’re placing an inadvertent but incredible weight on our loved ones as they are facing making difficult decisions and choices that nobody wants to make for those that they love. Your end of life plan comprises of things such as your end of life care wants, in addition to how comprehensive medical intercessions and measures need to be taken. And even though it can be awkward to prepare, similar to other aspects of your Estate Plan, you might feel content following you putting an end of life plan into place. It guarantees your wishes are unmistakable, so that members of your family and loved ones will not be faced with the challenging duty of making decisions for you. That, of its own account, makes end of life planning worthwhile, regardless of how strenuous the duty may seem. consider it as one of the remaining gifts you’re leaving your loved ones.

Why is it Important for End of Life Planning?

End of life planning is important so that your wants can be made genuine. But there’s a bigger aspect here that people don’t usually talk about. Honestly, this aspect of your Estate Plan has a lot more to do with other people that are in your life than it does with you. The ending stages of life leave those that are closest to you laden with many challenging-to-navigate emotions. They’ll of course be sad, maybe confused, usually angry, and it’s not unusual for different family members to have widely varying beliefs about what is going to be best, both towards the end, and even following, your passing. Preparing now for the unavoidable means that you can alleviate some of the stress your loved ones are going to face when protecting your assets and legacy. Meaning you are able handle the dying process while you’re still capable. Specifically, if you’ve recently been faced with a diagnosis of a fatal illness, determining future decisions now can provide some resemblance of control in what is going to likely feel like a very out of hand setting.

Improving the End of Life Planning Discussion

Having a discussion concerning your end of life plan with friends and family members is most likely going to be challenging, but it’s a vital part of the process. It becomes even more crucial (and maybe urgent) when you’re faced with a recent diagnosis. Preparing what you are going to say and having a straightforward idea of how you’ll carry out the talk can be beneficial and help get you through it. There are a lot of steps you are able to take to make it easier to bring up the subject of your end of life wants with the individuals around you.

  1. Completely engage. Make eye contact directly, stay sympathetic but firm.
  2. Remain practical. Keep the conversation high degree and very fact-based. Think of it as if you’re discussing allergies or another common illness.
  3. Promote respect. Let members of your family and friends know you’re anticipating a lot from them – so they respect your wishes. Also think about encouraging end-of-life companionship options.
  4. Confirm your own comprehension. Usually, families are going need affirmation that you fully comprehend what you’re asking of them. Be forbearing and make clear to them that you’re of sound mind and have put contemplation into your choices.
  5. Provide them time. Don’t forget that even when you’ve come to terms concerning the future, your loved ones might require some time. That’s okay…try and give it to them.

Helping Your Loved Ones

It’s not unusual for family members and friends to have a hard time accepting the information you’re providing them with. When you’re noticing this to be true, there are some things you can do to help.

  • Bring them with you to your next appointment. The doctor can assist you in setting expectations for what your future might hold, and this could be a key aspect in the capability to accept your choices.
  • Devise your plan in writing. But don’t quit there – speak, a lot, to your loved ones. Whereas it might seem and feel relentlessly otherwise, don’t forget (and tell them again) that death is one of the most common elements of life. The more you try to make it normal, the better the chance that your loved ones are going to be able to come to terms with what you’re facing. Don’t forget, this doesn’t always mean it is going to be easy, but it can aid as they move through the grief stages in their own way.
  • Check in frequently. Addressing your end of life plan usually isn’t a one-off thing. Check in on the way. Let them know you comprehend how challenging this must be for them.
  • Don’t forget that things are going to change, and that’s okay. Even the most ideal plans could be subject to changes out of our control. Let members of your family and friends know that even if things don’t go just as you planned, you’re attempting to trust the process.

Final End of Life Planning Checklist

Following you understanding why end of life planning and care is so vital, and you have a plan in place to impart with your loved ones, you can take solace with the fact that you know you’ve done everything possible on your end. Use the checklist below to guarantee you have a plan that’s appropriate and complete.

  1. Get your end of life planning paperwork prepared
  2. Choose among a Will or Trust
  3. Create a list of any assets you have
  4. Establish end of life plans for housing
  5. Jot down your final wishes comprising of a funeral plan and a burial arrangement
  6. Devise your obituary and/or death notice

Facing our own mortality is challenging for many of us, but thinking realistically about it, with a clear head and a list of beneficial information as your guide, can ease the uncomfortableness and help you get through the process. Whereas death is Usually a sad, discomforting time, those left grieving can be content with the knowledge that you prepared in your own way, declaring your wishes and planning as much as possible to help them through their loss.


  1. End of life planning – FAQ, checklist, and Timeline. Trust & Will. (n.d.). Retrieved December 14, 2021, from https://trustandwill.com/learn/end-of-life-planning-checklist

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