This week is “National Estate Planning Awareness Week” as designated by the United States House of Representatives.  Below is the resolution passed by the House of Representatives in 2008.  For all the reasons stated in the resolution it’s a good time to start your estate planning if you have not already, and if you have an estate plan it’s a great time to review the plan to see that it still meets your needs and desires, and deals with all your concerns.


Happy National Estate Planning Awareness Week!

110TH CONGRESS

2D SESSION H. RES. 1499

Designating the third week of October as ‘‘National Estate Planning

Awareness Week’’.

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES

S

EPTEMBER 25, 2008

Mr. T

HOMPSON of California (for himself, Mr. BACA, Mr. BERRY, Mr. BOSWELL,Mr. BRALEY of Iowa, Mr. CARSON, Mr. CAZAYOUX, Mr.CHILDERS, Ms. CLARKE, Mr. CLAY, Mr. CLEAVER, Mr. COOPER, Mr.COURTNEY, Mr. CRAMER, Ms. DEGETTE, Mr. DELAHUNT, Ms. EDWARDS of Maryland, Mr. ELLISON, Mr. EMANUEL, Ms. ESHOO, Mr. ETHERIDGE,Mr. GILCHREST, Mr. GONZALEZ, Mr. GENE GREEN of Texas, Mr. HALL of New York, Ms. HARMAN, Mr. HILL, Mr. HINCHEY, Ms. HOOLEY, Mr. ISSA, Ms.
JACKSON-LEE of Texas, Ms. KILPATRICK, Mr. LEWIS of Georgia, Ms. MATSUI, Mr. MCDERMOTT, Mr. MCNERNEY, Mr. PERLMUTTER, Mr. RODRIGUEZ, Mr. ROSS, Mr. ROTHMAN, Mr. RUPPERSBERGER, Mr. SALAZAR, Mr. SAXTON, Ms. SCHAKOWSKY, Mrs. SCHMIDT, Mr. SIRES, Mr. WALDEN of Oregon, Ms. WASSERMAN SCHULTZ, Mr. WAXMAN, Mr. WELCH of Vermont, and Ms. WOOLSEY) submitted the following resolution; which was referred to the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform

RESOLUTION

Designating the third week of October as ‘‘National Estate

Planning Awareness Week’’.

Whereas it is estimated that over 120,000,000 Americans do

not have up-to-date estate plans to protect themselves or

their families in the event of sickness, accidents, or until death.


Whereas a 2004 Roper poll commissioned by the American

Institute for Certified Public Accountants found that

two-thirds of Americans over age 65 believe they lack the

knowledge necessary to adequately plan for retirement,

and nearly one half of all Americans are unfamiliar with

basic retirement tools, such as a 401(k) plan;

2

Whereas careful estate planning can greatly assist Americans

in preserving assets built over a lifetime for the benefit

of family, heirs, or charities;

Whereas estate planning involves many considerations, including

safekeeping of important documents, documentation

of assets, operation of law in the various States,

preparation of legal instruments, insurance, availability

of trust arrangements, charitable giving, inter vivos care

of the benefactor, and other important factors;

3

Whereas estate planning encourages timely decisions about

the method of holding title to certain assets, the designation

of beneficiaries, and the possible transfer of assets

during the life of the benefactor;

4

Whereas many Americans are unaware that lack of estate

planning and ‘‘financial illiteracy’’ may cause their assets

to be disposed of to unintended parties by default

through the complex process of probate;

5

Whereas alternatives to disposition of assets after death, such

as planned gift-giving, may accomplish a benefactor’s

goal of providing for his or her family and favorite charities;

6

Whereas careful planning can prevent family members or

other beneficiaries from being subjected to complex legal

and administrative processes requiring significant expenditure

of time, and greatly reduce confusion or even

animosity among family members or other heirs upon the

death of a loved one;

7

Whereas important considerations as to donation of organs

and use of life support functions may be made through

the estate planning process;

8

Whereas the implementation of an estate plan starts with

sound education and planning, and then may require the

proper drafting and execution of appropriate legal documents,

including wills, trusts, and durable powers of attorney

for health care;

9

Whereas the third week of October should be designated as

‘‘National Estate Planning Awareness Week’’; and

10

Whereas the National Association of Estate Planners and

Councils, representing over 28,000 estate planning professionals,

together with the Universal Press Syndicate,

the largest independent newspaper syndicate in the world,

are prepared to provide such educational information to

the public in a focused manner during National Estate

Planning Awareness Week:

Now, therefore be it

Resolved, That the House of Representatives—

(1) encourages the distribution of estate planning information by professionals to all Americans;

and

(2) supports the designation of a ‘‘National Estate Planning Awareness Week’’.
 E:BILLSHR1499.IH HR1499 wwoods2 on PRODPC68 with BILLS

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