We’re Having THAT Conversation


I am positive that you have seen the commercial selling Life insurance on TV, where the husband rolls his eyes and says to his wife “We are NOT having THAT conversation are we—looking into Life Insurance? The wife says “NO We are making the call today to get Life insurance!

In our household THAT conversation was:       We are getting a Living Will


My parents had the foresight to obtain a Living Will in their fifties. When my mother passed having a Living Will in place made the entire process easier for my siblings and me.

Procuring A Living Will

I would like to share with you the process my husband and I went through to get a Living Will. We live in Michigan and any information I give you regarding a Living Will is the process that is acceptable in Michigan. Also, the process and documents drawn up by our lawyer may be different than the lawyer that you procure. My intent is to give you an overview of what a Living Will process entails.


We started the process by procuring a lawyer I had previous dealings with who also dealt with estate planning. The initial meeting with my lawyer was an informational meeting. Our lawyer gathered all our personal information, such as birthdates, social security numbers, home address, zip and telephone number, house value and IRA’s that we had.

In addition, he asked who did we choose to be our medical advocate for our medical care and the beneficiaries of our estate. Also, the lawyer answered any questions we had regarding the drawing up of the Living Will, what it cost, how long does it take to draw up and what is our part in the process.


Our initial meeting was October 9, 2023. On November 3, 2023, we received twelve different documents to look over, make any corrections and send back. Those forms are listed below:

1_Bill of Sale—sale of main residence and possessions to the Trust (a transfer of house/possessions in the Trust name)

2_Certificate of Trust and Existence and Authority—our acknowledgement and set up of the Trust.

3_Assignment_our acknowledgement of transfer to our beneficiaries at the time of both our passing.

4_DPA-Husband name—Durable Power of Attorney for my husband in the event of my passing

5_DPA-Wife name—Durable Power of Attorney for myself in the event of my husband passing

6_Ladybird Deed to Trust—deeds our mutual property to the trust but still remains ours

7_Joint Trust Married Couple Without Taxable Estate—sets the rules of distribution of our assets and assures we keep our property/possessions until we pass.

8_PAD-Wife—my medical assigned advocate, first my husband, then my children

9_Pourover Will-Wife—my last will and testament

10_PAD-Husband—my husbands medical assigned advocate, first myself, then our children

11_Pourover Will-Husband—my husbands last will and testament

12_Quit Claim Deed—the sale of lot jointly owned to the trust (a transfer of lot in trust name)


It took us about 2 weeks to go through each document thoroughly, we had a tough time understanding the legalese language. As we went through the documents, we made notes on any terms or areas we were not sure of the meaning, so to get those questions answered when we met again with our lawyer.

Our next meeting was December 6, 2023, to sign the twelve documents stated above as our Living Will & Testament. We signed all the documents the lawyer required; one process to complete was signatures of our two children on the Trustee documents. Typically, you designate one person to fulfill this position and have an alternative as backup if the original choice could not fulfill their duties to the Trust. We designated our oldest as the first trustee and our other child as the second trustee.


Consequently, This process was the most time consuming because the Trustee documents could not be hand delivered but had to be mailed to the prospective signers, my son living in our town and my daughter living out of state. Once the  lawyer received all the needed documents, he compiled them into a nice portfolio. On February 5, 2024, my husband and I received the completed Living Will Portfolio, which completed the process of forming a Living Will.


From start to finish, this process of procuring a Living Will took 5 months. The cost of the Living Will (Michigan and our lawyer’s pay rate) was $1300.00. Some may say that is a steep price to pay. For us, knowing that our property and possessions would not go through probate and our children would receive their inheritance and we would have the care we need was well worth it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *