Mitigating the Lack of Wills One Brochure at a Time
To mitigate the issue of individuals not making a will, a prompting system should be added to the driver’s license renewal process, informing people about estate planning—wills in particular—and providing brochures discussing how to create a will and why it is important to do so. Incorporating a prompting system into the driver’s license renewal process will reveal all of the necessary information about a will to those younger individuals, while also teaching or reminding older individuals who are getting their licenses renewed about the importance of wills. The prompt and brochure will actively work together to normalize the execution of estate planning documents and mitigate the prevalent issues surrounding those documents. Part II of this Comment will provide history on estate planning and describe various estate planning documents. It will then go into more detail on specifically what a will is, what statutes govern it, and why it is necessary. Section B will show who is most likely to have a will and the most cited reasons for not having one. Section C will explore what states have attempted to mitigate this issue. The focus of the background will then transition to the organ donation process in Section D. Finally, Part II will conclude with information regarding tax exemptions. Part III will uncover how the estate planning prompt will be implemented, how it will work to mitigate the lack of wills, and why the prompt should mirror that of the organ donation process. Section C will propose counterarguments such as cost, the prompt’s effect on younger individuals, its online format, and whether the issue is prevalent enough to be adopted by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). Following the counterarguments, Section D will explore some practical and policy considerations to contemplate regarding the estate planning prompt and brochure. This Comment will conclude with some final thoughts about the proposed solution and how it will mitigate the lack of wills seen in today’s society.