For anyone who hasn’t had the opportunity to see the movie, Frozen, avoid the rest of this blog because some spoilers may be provided. For readers thinking about their future in terms of estate planning however, you might be surprised to learn that this popular movie with extremely catchy music can teach you some estate planning lessons.
First of all, you need to plan for incapacity. In the movie, the oldest sister Elsa has magic powers. Her behavior could even indicate that she is suffering from a debilitating bout of depression or mental illness.
Estate planning would include documents that allow another individual to take control of the impacted person’s finances if he or she becomes physically or mentally unable to manage their own affairs. Likewise, you need to plan ahead for avoiding financial predators. In the movie, the character that teaches this lesson is Hans. He wants to get married to Anna shortly after meeting her. Unfortunately, however, his ulterior motives are ultimately revealed.
As marriages and divorces frequently impact who you want to leave things to in terms of your beneficiaries, this is a great opportunity to think about protecting children from a previous marriage and protecting your assets as well.
Finally, you need to prepare for things to happen unexpectedly. You might be avoiding the estate planning process because you don’t want to think about death or assume that it won’t happen to you at this point in time. However, in the first couple of minutes of the movie, both Anna and Elsa are left without any guardians of the castle. If you have a will, you should use this to consider naming a guardian for your minor children and consider other situations in which you may be facing unexpected changes. Set up a meeting with a Georgia estate planning attorney- let the fact that the Frozen songs are so catchy be your reminder to update your documents!