Don’t Risk Your Legacy; Americans are Ignoring Their Estate Plan and Fewer People are Writing Wills and Trusts Post Pandemic

As the pandemic fades from view, and life returns to “normal,” fewer Americans are drafting wills and trusts, this is according to a new survey, and research indicating a decline in concerns about mortality.

The 2024 Wills and Estate Planning Study from reveals that only 32% of adults have a will, down from 34% in 2023. This decline follows a steady increase in will creation since 2020.

At the start and then height of the pandemic, estate planners observed a surge in the creation of wills and trusts. Americans, concerned about the future, confined to their homes and focused on health, took the opportunity to address their estate planning needs.

Research shows that older Americans are more likely to have wills, yet many still do not. In 2024, 43% of adults over 55 reported having wills, down from 46% in 2023 and 48% in 2020. 

This is concerning for a number of reasons and could create significant problems for survivors. Estate planning attorneys emphasize that nearly everyone should have an estate plan, especially those with children or property. Dying without a will can create major probate issues for loved ones.

Many people without wills cited procrastination as the reason, while some felt they lacked sufficient assets to warrant estate planning. Some found the process too complex or expensive. A will or trust allows individuals to specify how their property and assets should be distributed upon death. Without a will, the state takes over, and probate laws, which vary by state, determine asset distribution.

At Amaral and Associates, P.C., we can make the process easy for you and at a reasonable cost. We take an inventory of whatever assets that you do have, and then come up with a plan for what you want to happen in the event of the unexpected. We understand the importance of estate planning services for families and single professionals. 

Our seasoned attorneys can explain what you need to do and bring decades of experience in estate planning and family law, offering comprehensive consultations to help individuals understand their resources and plan for a secure future. 

Whether it’s safeguarding assets, addressing inheritance concerns, or planning for long-term care, we provide personalized solutions to meet your unique needs.  Please contact us to learn more about our comprehensive estate planning services and family law center.  Please call (617) 539-1010 ext. 111 or email Attorney Edward L. Amaral, Jr. at

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