Law Office of Paul Black - January 2019


January 2019


A s we begin the new year, I am happy to announce that I am engaged! I proposed to my girlfriend, Nadia, from the top of Yonah Mountain last fall, and she made me the happiest guy in the world by saying yes! As we look to the future together, I now find myself practicing what I preach as an estate planner. At the time of writing, I have already picked up more life insurance and named my beneficiaries. I am young and healthy, so it may seem a little early for me to already be thinking

Nadia and my brother went to see if they could figure out the process, and I am

drop by a friend’s house even if I could not make the feast itself, so after I got my father to bed, I grabbed a bottle

sure they could have. But, as they opened up the door, they had a good laugh. True to form, I had anticipated that I may not be home during an outage and taped laminated instructions to the generator.

of wine and a dish apron and headed to my second holiday gathering of the evening. I always plan on being a good guest and helping out the host whenever I can, so I frequently volunteer to do the dishes and make sure I

I know most people are not planners; we are too busy living. But I speak from experience when I say even a little forethought can make a big difference down the road. I am lucky enough to work in a field

am equipped to do so. Well, this time, something unexpected happened. As I was scrubbing away, someone came to lend a helping hand. I had never met her before, but we really hit it off. That person was Nadia. While I had been prepared to do the dishes that night, I had not planned on meeting my future wife. But that is the funny thing about planning: The more prepared we are, be it dirty dishes or old age, the more time we will

about what I will leave behind when I am gone, but I have always been somewhat of a “pathological planner.”

that proves this to me every day. I myself have learned that preparing for the inevitable can open up opportunities you never expected.

If it was not for this planning instinct, I may not have met Nadia in the first place.

It is part of the reason I enjoy my work. While I do not expect to go anywhere anytime soon, I have learned time and again that it never hurts to be prepared.

In fact, if it was not for this planning instinct, I may not have met Nadia in the first place. It

have to enjoy the happy surprises that spring up along the way.

Just recently, a transformer blew up near our house. I had just had a generator installed but was not home to get it running the morning of the outage.

was Thanksgiving night, and I had just finished having a small dinner with my father and brother. I had been invited to

-Paul Black

Do you have estate planning or elder law-related questions? Write to me at with Asked and Answered in the subject line. Your identity will be kept confidential. The opinions offered in this column are not intended to replace or substitute any financial, medical, legal, or other professional advice. | 1

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