Somewhere in the education system for financial planners, the curriculum missed one little detail. People die unexpectedly! Estate planning attorney’s missed that class also.

For all the good that can come from the advice of either profession, none of the advice works if they take months, or years to finally come up with the perfect plan…..and their client is dead or has been rendered uninsurable due to cancer or heart disease. I’ve seen it happen more often than it ought to and I hope the family has the presence of mind and the resources to sue the pants off of the poorly advised advisor.

Whether an estate attorney or financial planner, the first thing they should advise if a person doesn’t have life insurance in force, is to get some. Buy term insurance. Keep it cheap and easy to walk away from, but don’t go into a planning process that always takes longer than it should, uninsured.

Not long ago I had a client who kept waiting, against my advice, for a retirement specialist’s opinion on how much life insurance he should have in order to maximize his retirement income. 9 months and a massive stroke later he didn’t have a choice anymore.

My advice, and if I’ve said this once, I’ve said it a whole bunch of times, is to fill the need for life insurance and then plan. You can always change. Just because you bought a 10 year term doesn’t mean you have to wait 10 years to make a change. Change when the planner makes their recommendation. Change when the estate tax attorney comes up with a plan. Also, don’t do an extensive 6 months shopping and research job on what product to buy and leave yourself uninsured during that time. Put something in force and then shop with all the confidence in the world that if you die while shopping, your family will be just fine.

You know, this kind of advice really rubs some people the wrong way. But ask your financial advisor or tax attorney if they are willing to take care of your family if you die before the end of the planning process, or if you become uninsurable. We all know the answer to that one.

Please don’t think I am against good financial planning or good estate legal advice, but I am against these people advising that you hold off on your purchase for even a week, let alone the months it usually takes for them to do their job.

This post is somewhat dated. Life insurance underwriting is changing and evolving continually. For more updated information check out some of the key word links. If you have a specific question or topic you need information for do a search. If you don’t find the answers you need contact me and we’ll make sure you get the information that is important to you.

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