More people drafting wills during COVID-19 pandemic

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Source: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — During the COVID-19 pandemic attorney Brian Shelton has been hard at work.

“It has definitely prompted some people to do it, and cooled some people from doing it,” Shelton said.

He’s talking about estate planning.

The fear of catching coronavirus has some Tennesseeans planning ahead. Some are drafting wills in non-traditional ways.

“We’ve changed our procedures,” Shelton said. “We’re doing a lot more online meetings, a lot more online reviews. Now the signings generally take place at the counter with the door propped open, having already reviewed the documents. Then its a three minute sign, sign, sign and head out.”

Last spring the CEO of Gentreo, an online estate-planning platform, reported a 143% increase in online will creation to ABC news.

Shelton says his business partner has even passed documents back and forth under a client’s window to avoid direct contact.

Another group focused on writing their wills is healthcare workers.

“I’ve had several physicians, like we discussed, that wanted to do estate planning because of the pandemic,” Shelton said. “I had one that was going to New York City to go be on the front lines. We dealt with some estate planning for that client prior to leaving.”

Shelton says if you’re worried, he’d encourage you to talk to your lawyer about estate planning during the pandemic.

“You just gotta look at see what the need is,” Shelton said. “But yes, generally I would say yes it’s a good idea. Even if it’s just the power of attorney and the health care directive.”

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