repeat message - have a will
This has been discussed before, but it is important enough to bear repeating.
Yesterday we learned that a friend and co-worker died suddenly in a plane lavatory while returning from the west coast. She was 58, active, healthy and involved in many activities. She planned to retire in about 2 years. She had said to in the past that her partner of 30 years was financially dependent on her since he had been laid off late in his career, without yet having fully funded his retirement.
Apparently, she had no will.
One deferred compensation account lists siblings as benefactors, but no one knows her intentions for the bulk of her estate. The house was in her name only. The state, as the employer, will keep her retirement funds, since there is no beneficary. She recently inherited funds from her father and had the basic life insurance that comes with employment (about 1.5x salary). It is unclear whether any beneficiareis are identified. Her partner will be at the mercy of her family, who at this point is being kind and taking his lead for arrangements, but that could change.
We are all in shock, saddened and dumb founded at the loss and at the anticipated "unnecessary" chaos.
I would not have anyone adopt my mode of living...but I would have each one be very careful to find out and pursue his own way, and not his father's or his mother's or his neighbor's instead. Thoreau, Walden