|By McCord, Michael|
When her mother died suddenly in 2006, Barbara Sedoric of
Motivated by the experience, Sedoric eventually started a company called LastingMatters, which seeks to take a practical approach to one of the most difficult subjects of all - the inevitability of death and how to plan for it.
So after years of research and hundreds of interviews, Sedoric published the LastingMatters Organizer in paperbound and digital formats.
"There is an astounding amount of information we carry within us about our day-to-day lives that may be useful to our loved ones after we die," said Sedoric. "We know the alternative to doing nothing. If we have not communicated the practical details, such as passwords, bank accounts or disposition of personal items, it can be lost forever when we die."
A. I used my experiences of being a longtime estates and trust paralegal at a
I wanted to create a one-stop place where all personal information would be found when you die. Since we don't know when we are going to die, I wanted this to be practical and pragmatic.
* Q. Hasn't this been done before?
A. No. I researched high and low and did not find something this comprehensive. There are segments out there. The legal community and health care fields all have their own set of documents. But the thoughts and wishes inside each and every one of us are often never fully communicated. Death is final, and there are no more conversations to have or answers to be found.
* Q. Who is your target market?
A. The main target is any adult, but smaller-scale, women aged 40 to 75. Women tend to be the ones who are gatherers and caretakers of family information. They also live longer and are more likely to experience the death of a spouse.
There are also tens of millions of baby boomers who have aging parents. Many of these seniors have not articulated this information, and using the organizer would ease the burden on adult children.
I also see a market of strategic partners, such as estate and trust attorneys, certified planners and financial advisors, insurance companies and retirement communities, military family, hospice and grief support organizations, and larger nonprofits, such as
* Q. Why is it hard to share this information?
A. I've learned that we may personally consider such issues as wills and estate planning or cremation or burial. Yet, we don't often communicate the daily details of our life and what is to happen when we die. Planning for the end is not something people do. Some people think if they make a plan about dying or death it will happen.
* Q. What kind of feedback have you received from people who have used the organizer?
A. I've been struck by how important people think this task is and how it creates conversations that might otherwise not happen. Not every chapter pertains to everyone but I've been told there's a lot that matters.
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