Tips for creating an end of life plan

by the Editor, SeniorInsider | May 31, 2011

End of life planning may seem like the last thing you want to tackle on a bright, sunny day or, in fact, on any day. However, if you want arrangements concerning your death to go smoothly, you should not overlook this step. When someone passes away, it can be one of the most difficult times for a family. However, when things like death insurance are firmly in place, it can provide a bit of comfort and security.  Plus, your family will find out what types of arrangements you wanted. While end of life planning may be unpleasant, it certainly is a necessary evil.

Financial Planners and End of Life Planning

Oftentimes seniors enlist the help of a financial planner to help with end of life planning. Experts in the field can give you good advice based on what they have seen work successfully with their past clients.  Don’t hesitate to ask for help if you find this topic to be overwhelming to handle on your own.

What Should End of Life Planning Consist Of?

First of all, your end of life planning should include making copies of documents that your friends and family will find helpful in taking over your affairs. This can include important tax documents, household documents, papers concerning vehicle and property and even information about your pets.

If there are professionals who handle your various affairs, you will want to clearly list out this information and phone numbers.  Also be sure to list out benefits you receive, whether they are from the veteran’s administration or Social Security. Also if you haven’t already, you will want to create a will and living will as a part of your end of life planning process.

Death Insurance Information

Of course, it goes without saying that you should have your death insurance information handy for your beneficiaries to go over. This can go in a file that includes all of your insurance policies, bank accounts and mortgage accounts.

What is Death Insurance?

Death insurance is sometimes referred to by a far more uplifting name, “life insurance.” Life insurance for seniors is definitely important when it comes to end of life planning and should not be overlooked. Survivors of those who have death insurance will receive a cash benefit that they can use in whatever manner they wish. This income can be of tremendous assistance to the spouse and children of the deceased.

Both term life insurance and whole life insurance pay a lump sum to beneficiaries. Whole life insurance accrues an additional value over the years. As long as you continue to pay a monthly premium, both types of life insurance will pay out in the case of your death.

Other Specifics that are Part of End of Life Planning

Other details concerning your funeral and burial should include whether you want to be cremated or buried. If you want to be buried, you should specify how you would like that to be handled. You might want to purchase a burial plot in advance. At the very least, you should specify what cemetery you want to be buried in.  If you can also select a funeral home, your decision will be beneficial to your friends and family as well. Also any details about how you would like the ceremony to go are highly relevant. For example, do you want to have special readings or special types of flowers?

Finish Your End of Life Planning and Focus on Something Positive

Of course, it is far more uplifting to think about prolonging your life and staying healthy rather than dwelling on end of life planning. It is a good idea to spend a specified amount of time dealing with these arrangements and then moving on to a more cheerful topic.  Turn your attention to things that you can do proactively to extend your life, such as maintaining a proper diet for elderly people and incorporating exercise into your daily regime.




  • My father had to move out of the retirement community he was living in. I didn’t know what to do. I found a new one in the same city with an opening the very same day on Thanks!

    Doug J


  • I was in need of resources for caregivers and stumbled on your site. You answered a lot of the questions I had about taking care of my aging mother. What a wealth of knowledge, all in one place.

    Lisa Z


  • I saved so much time thanks to your valuable resources on this site. We need more resources like yours on the Internet. I'll be sure to refer anyone who is looking for senior related information to you.

    Jeana M


  • I was having a tough time understanding all the legal issues (probate, trusts, living wills, etc.) until I found You put everything into terms that I can easily understand.

    John R


Connect With Us

If you’d like to receive FREE information on a range of topics of interest to seniors, fill out the form below:

Please send me:

Free Senior’s Guide

Receive a Free Senior Living Insders Guide!

Free Senior’s Guide
Free Newsletter

Receive periodic news relating to active senior living!

Free Newsletter
Money Saving Deals

Get money saving deals and Special Offers for Seniors!

Money Saving Deals