On May 10 of 2012 we lost an iconic figure in the world of automotive design and racing. Carroll Shelby died at the age of 89. He left behind a colerful legacy that includes the classic AC Cobra and Shelby Mustang designs.
Following his death there was a story circulating about some difficulties between his seventh wife Cleo and his three children. The three children reportedly contended that their father wanted to be cremated, and they had signed documents to prove it. Cleo did not accept the validity of these documents. She said that he wanted to be buried and that final arrangements were her responsibility and right to make.
While this dispute was taking place the final services had to be postponed while the body of the legendary automotive designer was held in a morgue. This unpleasant situation was a source of great dismay for the many friends and admirers that Carroll Shelby had around the world.
There is however some good news to report about the matter. The parties finally came to an agreement to direct the cremation of Shelby's body.
This situation illustrates how easy it is for people close to you to disagree after you pass away. Because of this it is important to express your desires in binding estate planning documents. By taking these steps you lessen the likelihood of a dispute among your loved ones concerning these types of decisions made after your death.
While we would all like everyone in our families to get along perfectly at all times reality is something different for most people. Many families are comprised of very different types of personalities, and in fact blended families can include individuals who really don't have a whole lot in common.
And even if you have a relatively small family that is close-knit each person simply may not agree about certain courses of action.
This is why it is important to state your wishes about the use of medical procedures if you were to fall into an irreversible terminal condition. The case of Terri Schiavo several years ago underscores the importance of executing a living will.
In addition to this there is the matter of final arrangements. There are a lot of decisions that must be made with regard to your funeral and the handling of your body. Exactly how to proceed can be a matter of debate unless you are very clear about your wishes when you are devising your estate plan.
These are details that can sometimes be overlooked by people who are primarily focused on asset transfers. The best way to make sure that all of your bases are covered is to work with a licensed estate planning lawyer who will guide you through all the details and see to it that nothing gets overlooked.