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The Toughest Conversation You Will Ever Have and How To Handle It

Posted by Nichole T. Compton | Dec 23, 2021 | 0 Comments

Estate Planning and Why It Matters

I just wanted to give you a FREE gift to help you and your family this holiday season in honor of my best friend, Jamila. No strings attached. 

Holidays are associated with family time, good food, conversations, cheerful music, happiness, and loved ones gathered in good spirits. Many of us are scrambling to find the perfect gifts to give this holiday season, while others, like my grandson, are making the lists of which gifts he hopes to receive.

Holidays are also the best time to give the gift everyone benefits from - yet no one considers … until they hear this.

At 28, my best friend of all time and angel on earth, Jamila R. Harris Grant, finally convinced her doctors to realize the lumps then protruding from under her arm were not simply her overreacting. Her concerns were valid. She had breast cancer and later was given months only to live (a mere six months, if I'm correct.)

Like me, nobody who knew her could fathom how this could be. Jamila was the most health-conscious person, exuding positive energy, very knowledgeable, and a blessing to so many. 

Well, she was not finished with life, and God was not finished allowing her to bless so many here. Jamila lived six more years, surviving the double mastectomy at 28, cancer metastasizing to her lymph system, lungs, and brain, and the surgeries and treatments she endured with each of those. 

Jamila was more than just a survivor. When she died, the resounding accolade from near and far was how she blessed everyone she met. No matter who they were, she consistently blessed everyone with her positive energy and life outlook, wisdom, and so much more.

She blessed me then and since, and I forever am determined to continue what she started.

Soon after, I hung my shingle. Jamila was there to help me furnish and organize my new practice. One day, she asked me for a favor. Her simple request was for me to create an estate plan so her family could mourn in peace when she passed. So, we took that day and drafted her will, and her living will, a power of attorney, etc. I filed away a finished set in my office and sent a neat folder containing the originals to her husband.

When she died, we did not mourn. We celebrated her life and memories.

We celebrated because she loved us enough to leave us the one gift she gave us that day!

Her estate plan gave peace of mind to her husband and their two small girls, to me, her dad, her mom, and to all who were close and loved her. She had everything organized and in one place for us to find. Jamila blessed us with clear directions on where every important paper was, and who was to perform in her “celebration” and what they were performing. She even arranged for her cremation and left keepsake necklaces to hold her ashes for her daughters.

Boy! Was that a gift!

Peace. No confusion. No guessing or scrambling searching for paperwork through tears streaming down the faces of her loved ones. No arguing or fighting over who got what. No missing life insurance papers or demands for payments from the funeral home. She accounted for it all. In a small packet of documents that took a day to complete, notarize and compile into a small file folder within a legal folder. Well…two. One for her husband. And one for her lawyer, who was honored to be her friend.

Over the years and also within my own family, quite the opposite is what I see. Especially within the Black community, no one usually talks about or addresses estate planning. It is almost as if it is taboo or an afterthought that happens much too late and is rushed.

I HATE SEEING hard-earned assets taken by the government or abandoned and lost due to poor or no planning. Watching keepsakes, houses, cars, and other investments not adequately handled after the owner dies hurts my heart.

Ultimately, I HATE EVEN MORE seeing families divided and torn apart arguing over the true wishes of the deceased loved one and who gets what.

Like me, you should want to ensure your family is lovingly united and not torn apart over material things. 

So, no matter what niche my practice takes, I will always handle two types of matters: Expungements and Estate Planning. [We will save the expungements for another day. I promise.]

I do estate plans in honor of Jamila R. Grant, and consequently, her gift continues to bless others as she did. I picture her in heaven smiling.

Likewise, I always try to keep my prices reasonable and affordable, particularly for this. And I picture Jamila in heaven smiling and winking.

So, in honor of Jamila Grant, my angel and friend, I want to bless you with a gift, free of charge with no strings attached, to make it a bit easier to express your wishes to your family and help you think about this tough topic. 

I also have other tools, recorded presentations, packets, and more to help you, if needed. 

You are unique, as is your life and final wishes. I never recommend cookie-cutter solutions or one size fits all estate plan approach. But I know sometimes, these things may not be in the budget. So, I offer a variety. I hope you take a look. 

Feel free to shoot me questions on my client portal at LouisvilleKYLaw.com, where you are also always welcome to schedule a consultation with me. 

Seasonings Greetings.

Nichole Compton

About the Author

Nichole T. Compton

Nichole T. Compton is a proud Kentucky native and born in Louisville. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Arts and Technology Management from Berea College. After that, Nichole graduated from the University of Louisville, where she received both her Master of Business Administration foc...

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