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October 15, 2018 is the first day of National Estate Planning Awareness Week. Yes, it is a real designation to remind you of the importance of preparing and creating a plan to protect all that you’ve been working for– your family and your finances.  To give you an idea of the information that you might need to gather in preparation for your first meeting with an attorney, view the preparation checklist.

National Estate Planning Week was introduced in 2008.  Prompted by the estimation that more than 120 million Americans did not have estate plans to protect themselves and their families in the event of sickness, accidents or untimely death, Congress formally enacted a resolution setting aside the third week in October to talk about the importance of estate planning.

Though it can be difficult to plan for a time when you are gone, it is an important step to take to ensure that your assets are distributed appropriately upon your passing. An estate plan – particularly a will – allows you to make these important decisions now to make the process easier for your loved ones later.

For parents – or even pet owners – the process becomes even more important. A will lets you decide who will take care of your children if something should happen to you. 

And for the philanthropically minded, a will allows you to leave a lasting legacy by making a gift to a charity, such as the Alley Theatre. 

To help you get organized, the Alley also offers a free Personal Affairs Booklet (which can be e-mail or mailed). To request a copy of the booklet please contact Mary Kay Wittrock, Director of Planned Giving, at 713.315.3378 or  For more information on this type of charitable giving, please visit our website