Women now hold more college and advanced degrees than men, and represent more than half the labor force. We are healthier and living longer. That’s some of the good news.
The not so good news is that in Colorado, women earn 77 cents for each dollar made by a man. That is a tick above the national average. We are more likely to work part-time and assume care giving roles for our children or aging or ill family members. Women live longer than men. By age 65, nearly 43% of women are widows, but only 14% percent of men have lost a spouse.
What does this mean? By living longer, earning less, and having family dependent upon us for caregiving, women need to take steps to plan properly for their future.
From an estate planning point of view, this means get organized and plan. Women are comfortable caring for others, but leery to put a plan in place that will acknowledge our own wishes should we die or become incapacitated. We need to appreciate that by creating a will, that includes guardianship provisions, as well as a medical power of attorney, living will and even a trust, we are further caring for those we love. By leaving a detailed plan, we take the guesswork out of our intentions and allow our family members to be looked after properly in our absence. Planning is its own gift and should not be underestimated.
From a financial perspective, studies have shown that men and women approach finances differently. Perhaps more importantly, a recent study by Charles Schwab indicates that women are deferring to men and not participating in financial planning. This is problematic because women live longer than their spouses. If they have not participated in the conversation about retirement, estate or long-term care planning, these women could be surprised to find out their finances cannot support their lifestyle, desires, or worse, basic needs.
We are passionate about helping women avoid this situation.
At Groves Law, we work to empower, enlighten and engage women through education. It is the mission of our Practically Speaking luncheons to provide women with the knowledge to more effectively take care of their future by dealing with some of a woman’s most important planning issues including her estate plan, financial plan, retirement plan and caregiving plan. We are committed to providing you with the knowledge necessary for growth at our Practically Speaking Luncheons. Won’t you join us? We welcome you to register and Illuminate yourself.