Take Death Preparation Seriously, Before It's Too Late

BY RON L. MEYERS Jan. 30, 2023


Planning ahead for our inevitable passing is the best thing that we can do for our loved ones

 We've just had a death in the family.  An older relative, not in perfect health, but not in any obvious danger.  We expected to have many more happy visits in the years to come.  We won’t.

Plan for reality.

We must take death seriously.  This does not require being grim, it doesn’t require a preoccupation with doom.  It requires an awareness of the two things that we all know: (1) each person’s time will come, and (2) we have no idea when that will be.

It requires being practical.  Do you do your laundry?  Do you empty the litter box?  Many tasks are unpleasant but necessary.  Some are more important than others.  Do not let the importance of the task paralyze you.

Better sooner than later.

The sooner you put your affairs in order, the sooner you can put them out of your mind.  Address the risks, assess the options.  When you go, people will grieve – you can save them from further grief and trouble by putting things in order now.  Let them focus on you when the time comes, not on banks and bills and bickering.

Taking death seriously also means that we never know how much time we will have with our loved ones.  We must not miss occasions to see each other and be good to each other.  Our lives are finite; our lives with our loved ones are even more finite.  We must take them seriously and never take them for granted.


Ron Meyers graduated from Columbia University in 1992, from Harvard Law School in 1999, and has been practicing law in New York City since 2000. He worked for several years in major law firms on commercial real estate matters, such as the World Trade Center, the creation of the High Line and the redevelopment of Times Square. He turned to private-client work in 2007, opening his own practice in 2009, where has now served over 1,000 clients. He and his team handle estate planning, probate and residential real estate matters for individuals, couples, & families of all kinds.