Writing a Will

You know how there’s always something you know you should get to, but you never do? It nags at you every once in a while, but it just never seems like the right time. There’s always an excuse.

Working out. Vacuuming under the couch. Cleaning out the freezer. Writing a will. Updating the baby book.

Hold the phone…writing a will? That’s not something people put off. That’s something you do at the very least as soon as you have kids, right? Well wrong. My husband and I don’t have a will (or wills…are we each supposed to have one?). Either way, I know it’s time to put something together. It has nothing to do with our finances, because Lord knows those are sparse. It has everything to do with our boys. Who would they live with if something happened to both me and my husband? That’s the question that’s been holding us up.

We purchased a Writing Wills for Dummies book or computer software, I can’t remember which one now. But because we have Max, one of those “insert name here” type of will making aids just doesn’t fit for us. Sure, he’s ok now, but we have no idea what his future holds. We don’t know if he’ll go to college or be able to live on his own. We just don’t know how to plan for him. I know the same can be said for any child; what if they are in an accident, or get sick, but at least we kind of have a head start when planning for Max’s future.

I say we have a head start, but I actually have no idea where to start. I know there are such things as Special Needs Trusts and lawyers and advocates who can help. I guess I just need to go out and find one. If anyone knows one, please let me know.

That being said, if you’re in the southern portion of the state, and find yourself in a similar situation as me, there is someone who can help. Lawrence W. Berliner is a Special Education and Disability Lawyer based out of Westport and Guilford, CT. His firm is hosting several workshops in the area focusing on helping parents of a child with special needs. Along with other experts from the special needs community, his goal is to educate parents on Special Education rights, insurance issues (primarily in relation to the Autism Spectrum), financial planning and legislative issues. If you are interested in learning more about these workshops, held on December 3, 4 and 5, visit Attorney Berliner’s website and check out the Events column along the righthand side. Please note that these workshops do require an RSVP, so plan accordingly. They sound very informative. I just wish they were closer to me in central CT.

8 thoughts on “Writing a Will

  1. Did you get your will yet? With LegalShield, you can have you wills done very inexpensively. You may even to get them both done for the $17 per monthly contract fee. You can just try it for a month, get the wills and cancel. I don’t recommend that, though. The service is fantastic. It takes some getting used to be able to just pick up the phone and talk to a law firm about pretty much anything.

    Let me know if you want more info.


  2. We are in a similar position because I am backup guardian for my sister with special needs. When I was pregnant I reached out to some friends in the special needs community and worked with Atty. Karen Lynch right in west hartford center. She was great to work with. There’s also a group of advocates that try to educate the special needs guardians and self-advocates — The Family Empowerment Task Force – URL: http://family-empowerment.weebly.com/ Their mission is clearly stated in the current newsletter – with a primary focus towards legislative advocacy. Please feel free to contact me with any questions you may have.


  3. We did our wills (yes, you do one for each of you) a year or so ago. It was fairly straightforward because we weren’t accounting for any special needs and we don’t have many assets. I think the most difficult part is the part that comes BEFORE you actually write the will — just thinking about your kids being without you and deciding who you would want to raise them if you can’t. It’s very hard to think about and talk about and it’s hard to talk with family about, too.


  4. Larry Berliner is good peoples. He has been around a long time, was part of Klebanoff & Alfano before starting his own firm recently. Alyce Alfano still practices in West Hartford as well. You may want to start by consulting a regular old transactional attorney who can give you the basics for a will, and then bring in someone like Berliner to review and make whatever additions may be necessary. Oh, and I think there are lots of parents who don’t get around to writing their wills for quite some time … you can include me in that camp as well.


  5. Good reminder for all parents and I commiserate with you on how incredibly difficult it is to name that person, especially when there are special needs to consider.


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