For many of us, 2016 was memorable for reminding us of our own mortality. So many legends who were near and dear to our hearts died unexpectedly last year — Prince, George Michael, John Glenn, Garry Shandling, Alan Thicke, Gene Wilder, David Bowie, Florence Henderson and Alan Rickman were just a few that come to mind. And then, just when we all thought it was over, Carrie Fisher and her mother, Debbie Reynolds, both left us. Were you as heartbroken by this news as I was? I mean, really, 2016. Enough is enough.
It’s hard to think about these kinds of losses, but each time I hear of someone’s passing, I think about whether everything’s in order in my own life. The last thing I want is to leave loose ends that put my kids’ futures and well-being at risk.
When Dennis and I originally discussed writing our wills, we quickly realized that getting a lawyer to draw one up for us was a very expensive proposition. We looked online, but weren’t convinced that what we found there would hold up legally if a problem were to arise after our deaths
We aren’t the only ones who’ve felt this way — In fact, the same dilemma led to the creation of a new service called Bloomwell. The site was created by Devin Cuyler, an attorney who looked at the legal document services out there for families, found them to be lacking, and decided to create a business that allows families to make customized wills, living trusts, healthcare directives and more — all at an affordable price.
Documents can be tailored to suit families consisting of domestic partnerships, single parents, blended families, couples with ‘furbabies,’ and virtually any other arrangement you can dream up. They’re also tailored to meet the individual laws of each state. Simply open a Bloomwell account and answer a series of questions in order to customize the document you need. At the end, print it out and Bloomwell will let you know whether it simply needs to be signed and filed in order to be legally binding or signed and notarized, according to your state’s particular laws.
Available documents include:
-Health Care Directive
-Financial Power of Attorney
-Child Medical Consent
-Child Travel Consent
-Domestic Partnership Agreement
You can sign up for a membership ($79 annually) and get unlimited access to documents and free revisions. The membership lets you have multiple copies of documents so that you can protect your family. You can also buy documents individually (prices range from $9-$79). The choice is yours. No matter what you choose, it’s easy to see that this is a much less expensive alternative to hiring an attorney. If you, like many of us, feel that your Will and Directive needs are pretty straightforward, this may be a great option for you.
I have extensively reviewed the Bloomwell site and even gone through the process of creating a document and found that it was satisfactorily detailed, yet easy to follow. Explanations were given at each step so that I understood what was going on. I simply answered a series of questions and was finished in no time, with a PDF document that was ready to print.
It’s not pleasant to think about these kinds of things, but I will tell you from experience that there’s a tremendous sense of satisfaction in knowing that it’s all taken care of. You can actually get one of those New Year’s Resolutions done! Bloomwell makes it possible for everyone to plan for the future, even those with a limited budget.