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June 2024 Newsletter

June Newsletter

Welcome to our June 2024 Newsletter!

This month’s newsletter features shocking summer driving statistics, an update on The Grieving Families Act. Take a guess at how many Americans have wills… keep reading for the answer.

100 Deadliest Days of Driving

Believe it or not, statistically, the deadliest days for driving are from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

 Why is that?

Over the summer there are more people out on the road. School is out so there are more young people on the road. Due to warm weather more people may be driving to vacation destinations or going to the beach, for example. Additionally, sunny weather causes people to daydream and think about things rather than focusing on the road. Distracted drivers certainly contribute to accidents.

According to the National Highway and Traffic Safety Administration, in 2021:

  • Drivers under the age of 34 accounted for 47% of all distracted drivers involved in fatal accidents
  • Over 42,000 people died in fatal accidents and 2.5 million injured
  • 3,200 fatalities and 250,000 injuries were a result of distracted driving

Be careful when on the road this summer, stay focused on DRIVING and watching for others who are not.

Wrongful Death Legislation

Earlier this month, lawmakers in Albany voted overwhelmingly to revise New York State’s wrongful death laws. This is the third time that a version of this bill has been voted on, where previous attempts had been vetoed by Governor Hochul. This bill, The Grieving Families Act, is aimed at bringing justice to the loved ones of those who died preventable deaths. The bill targets the nearly 200 year old wrongful death laws that still stand. Sponsors of the bill are hopeful that it will be signed into law, citing that this new version includes some of the Governor’s suggestions. The bill has been sent to the Governor’s desk for it’s fate to be determined.

Avoiding Estate Planning?

According to AARP, only 30% of Americans have a Will. If you do, you’re ahead of 30% of your peers. A Will is only one part of an estate plan. All estate plans should also include a Power of Attorney, Health Care Proxy, Health Care Power of Attorney, Living Will and Appointment of Agent to Control Disposition of Remains. Depending upon your family dynamic, you may need or want a Trust. Trusts come in many varieties, may be revocable or irrevocable and are tailored to your estate plan. They may be testamentary (embedded in your Will for future use) or stand alone documents for your present or future purposes. Even those who have an estate plan may need a fresh look. Estate planning documents are affected by life’s events, such as births, deaths, marriages, divorces and financial changes. Your estate plan should be revisited when “life happens” or every 5-7 years. Don’t make the mistake of setting and forgetting your estate plan.

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