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Jill and Allen Greenwald stroll past Andy Warhol's "Marilyn Monroe 1967" at the Art Basel contemporary art show in Miami Beach, Florida, on Thursday, December 4, 2003. The exhibit, a showcase of works by more than 1,000 artists, is the "sister event" to the influential Art Basel show in Switzerland. Photographer: Mike Fuentes/Bloomberg News Andy Warhol’s painting “Marilyn Monroe 1967,” on display in 2003 at the Art Basel contemporary art show in Miami Beach, Florida. (Photo: Mike Fuentes/Bloomberg)

Estate planning is defined by Merriam-Webster as the arranging for the disposition and management of one’s estate at death through the use of wills, trusts, insurance policies, and other devices. A broader definition would include the same exercise in preparation of not only death but also one’s incapacitation. In plain English, it is instruction on how decisions should be made if you are not here, be it due to death, incapacitation, or maybe hiking Machu Picchu in an area with poor cell reception.

The aforementioned instructions can cover just about any topic imaginable. Most references to estate planning are financial, but wills and trusts will often guide decisions regarding health care, guardianships, business, education, all the way to who gets Grandpa’s rare penny from 1892.

 

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