I was leaving Sharm el Sheikh late on Saturday 17th October when I said to Tricia: “Putting on my financial planner hat: if the plane was to drop out of the sky it’s comforting to know that everything is place and that all of our affairs are in order.” Tricia shrugged it off and I could tell that she was saying ‘don’t be silly – planes do not drop out of the sky.’
The news less than 14 days later on the morning of Saturday 31st October has shocked me to the core. It has made me stop to think and re-examine our financial arrangements and I am pleased that everything is in place just as I thought.
Without wishing to dwell on the aeroplane theme I am reminded of a story that I was told several years ago: When you are in your aeroplane if the oxygen masks drop whose mask do you put on first – yours or your child’s? The answer is your own because if you stop to put on your child’s first the likelihood is that you will both die. In order to help others, you must ensure that your own house is in order first. Well mine is in good shape so how about yours?
Everyone should have properly drawn up and registered Lasting Powers of Attorney (there are two) and they should be securely stored in a place that your Attorneys can access then when needed. If you don’t have them or you only have an old Enduring Power of Attorney (these ended in October 2007), now is the time.
Drawing up a Will is no longer adequate on its own and everyone should have a Will, an Asset Protection Trust, and a Memorandum of Wishes. If you haven’t yet prepared these get in touch, this is something that you must not put off.
Funeral Expenses and your funeral wishes should also in place. We recommend that all clients have a funeral expenses plan in place with an independent funeral director and that your funeral wishes are stored with your funeral plan so that it is accessible at the time of need. For many of you this document is not the easiest thing to draw up and I am always glad to help.
Sharm el Sheikh was wonderful and the Egyptian people were so wonderfully friendly and helpful that I feel upset that they appear to have had their living snatched from them because of a few criminal fanatics. I hope that it won’t be too long before it will be safe to go again.