I'm a little sheepish about jumping on the Steve Jobs-in-memoriam bandwagon, but I feel compelled to express a few thoughts. His impact on the world we live in today can scarcely be overstated. You've heard or read it before, about how we now communicate, buy and listen to music, play video games and even watch video, has been irreversibly changed. Good or bad, it will never be the same.
What does this have to do with estate planning? Or even the law? Well, there is no question that the economy over the last few years has had an impact on the way we do things as well. I believe that these changes are also irreversible. For estate planning, as people have become more price-sensitive, they have become more likely to try to do this themselves. Rather than paying an attorney a few thousand dollars for an estate plan, they are more likely to use web sites like LegalZoom and Rocket Lawyer, or storefront document preparers, or programs like WillMaker. Good or bad, it will never be the same.
Steve Jobs had a relentless vision of a future that made everything better for everyone. He wasn't constrained by the past. The technological and economic transition we are now in is an opportunity for estate planning attorneys to look at the example of Steve Jobs and make the changes necessary to thrive in the future.
Good or bad, it will never be the same.