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By Jason Carrozza

Hi Everyone,

Happy Wednesday!!! This week we are going to discuss the 3 D’s to plan for in your estate plan. Divorce, Disability, and Drugs – they’re all out there. Are you prepared?

  1. Divorce: this is something that seriously needs to be considered in both your estate plan and your business formation/succession plans. Things happen, people change, relationships change, the last thing you want to see is an ex come into an unexpected windfall. Additionally, you should never have an ex-spouse instantaneously become a voting business partner of a company you created! There are steps that can be taken prior to divorce that can retain assets in your nuclear family and protect your business partner. These are MUST have conversations with both your estate panning attorney and financial advisor.
  2. Disability: A simple will does not protect your family or your assets if you become disabled or incapacitated. A will only works if somebody dies, NOT if they are incapacitated. How is your family going to access your assets or handle your affairs if you cannot? Do you have a health care proxy, a durable power of attorney, or a living trust? Have you thought about replacement of income if you are unable to work?
  3. Drugs: Addiction ravages families. Do any of your documents block distributions to those addicted to drugs or alcohol? Do you want to turn your inheritance over to somebody battling addiction?

Nobody wants to discuss the 3 D’s, but by addressing them in a preventative manner you can actually do a lot more good for your family in the long run. “What if” is a loaded question, BUT what if you wisely chose a structured plan from the outset? Have these conversations with your trusted advisors and avoid the chaos that ensues from denying the fact that these risks exist.

Until next time.

Wishing you and your family a safe journey,

About the Author
Jason M. Carrozza is a partner and founder of Family Legal Partners, P.C., previously owning Carrozza Law Office, P.C., which focused on estate planning, probate administration, and business formation. He was recognized as a Massachusetts Rising Star by New England Super Lawyers and Boston Magazine in 2014, 2015, and 2016, an honor given to no more than 5% of attorneys in the state. Graduating magna cum laude from New England Law and ranked 3rd in his class, Jason completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Tampa. He gained experience in civil litigation, divorce, corporate, and insurance defense law firms before opening his practice in 2004. Jason is admitted to practice before the Massachusetts Courts, is a trained family law mediator, and a member of the Massachusetts Council on Family Mediation. He has volunteered for pro bono panels with Senior Partners For Justice, South Middlesex Legal Services, and the New Center for Legal Advocacy. Dedicated to his community, he has served in various leadership roles including vice president of the Bellingham Business Association and Master of Excelsior Lodge of Massachusetts Freemasons. He teaches Estate Planning Basics at the Tri County Continuing Adult Education program and speaks at estate planning seminars throughout the year. An avid baseball fan and history enthusiast, Jason enjoys outdoor activities and spending time with his family. He lives in Massachusetts with his wife, Katrina, and their children, Zachary and Madelyn.