A Colorado Estate Planning Horror Story
Really understanding your entire estate plan is crucial to enabling you to know your wishes will be followed in a seamless and cost-effective process upon your passing.
An illustration of a poorly executed estate plan can be demonstrated by the recent story of Mary Robbins, a Colorado Springs resident. Apparently in 2006, she entered into a contract with Alcor Live Extension Foundation. Alcor is a cryogenics company that received much publicity with Ted Williams, the famous baseball player. Like Ted Williams, Mrs. Robbins supposedly wanted to be preserved with the hope that modern medicine would enable her to live again in the future. She even purchased a $50,000 annuity to pay for Alcor’s services for years to come. Just prior to her passing, it appears she changed the beneficiary designation on the annuity to no longer include Alcor. The problem with Mrs. Robbins estate plan was that while she allegedly changed the beneficiary designation, she apparently did not change the terms of her Colorado Will, which authorized Alcor to preserve her body. Litigation ensued and a settlement was reached between her family and Alcor.
The important lesson from this story is to make sure all parts of your estate plan are working properly together and represent your intent, so as to avoid any unnecessary litigation from any source.
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