Everplans has gotten an overhaul!

Our entire team has been holed up in an undisclosed location researching, refining, and building an entirely new Everplans experience for our users. We listened carefully to hundreds of customers who offered us brilliant feedback and incorporated many of those suggestions into the new Everplan. We think you’ll like what you see. But don't believe us. Just believe your own eyes.

When you log in you'll see quite a few changes. We've created new sections, renamed others, and moved things around to make it a better experience. Of the dozens of enhancements, here are 10 of the biggest ones we want to point out:

1. A Clean And Crisp "My Everplan" Page

With cleaner design and a more intuitive interface, we’ve made it much easier to manage your Everplan. This benefits not only you, but your Deputies as well. So pretty!

2. Work It

You can now include extensive details about your employer, your business, and other occupational income sources. Each employment status selection displays a different set of options allowing you to share this vital info with your Deputies.

3. There's No Place Like Homes & Real Estate

We supersized the Homes & Real Estate section, giving you the the ability to add everything anyone would need to know about your home in one place. This includes ownership, utilities, security, and more. You can also add multiple residencies and other types of real estate you may own as well.

4. In Case Of Emergency...

All of your need-to-know people are now housed in one handy section. This allows your Deputies faster access to these crucial people in your life, which can make a huge difference in the event of an emergency.

5. Teamwork: Medical, Legal, and Financial

We’ve added stand-alone sections for your financial advisors, attorneys, doctors, and care givers so you can easily share and keep track of all the professionals who help you with your planning, health, and legal needs.

6. A Plan With Benefits

The new Benefits & Pensions section stores information about your Social Security, pension, and other valuable annuities. When it comes time to settle your affairs, or for your family to collect benefits they're owed, this information will be priceless.

7. Family Matters

Your family is so important they deserve their own Everplan section. You can now also include detailed information about your spouse, children, and extended family. It's like Thanksgiving all year round.

8. On The Road...Or Water

Vehicle ownership generates a surprising amount of complexity, but we've distilled it down to the essential information a Deputy might need. You can even add boats, RVs, and other vehicle types to this section.

9. Notes & Instructions Everywhere

Sometimes you need to convey important information that's uniquely applicable to you and your loved ones. Fortunately, we've included a "Notes & Instructions" section with every question in the entire Everplan, so you can elaborate on your situation as eloquently as you like.

10. Medical Decisions All In One Place

We’ve combined a number of vital medical documents into a single section called "Advance Directive." Because different states use different forms -- Living Will, Health Care Proxy, DNR, etc.), we included them in a new single section of the plan under "Health & Medical."

And That's Not All...

There's also so much more, like the ability to add family recipies in the new "My Life & Legacy" section. For those of you who already have an account, feel free to dive in and check it out. For those who don't, what are you waiting for? Get planning already.

Note for existing users: While we took great care to migrate your data to the new Everplan, there may be some things that have been misplaced. Since we cannot, under any circumstances, see the information in your Everplan, log in and take a look for yourself and let us know if there are any issues.

We’d also love to hear your thoughts on the new Everplan. Send us a note here.

Thanks and enjoy the new planning experience!
-The Whole Everplans Team

Warning: There’s a major character spoiler ahead. Proceed only if you are up-to-date on the show or don’t care about spoilers.

As the popular AMC show Mad Men draws to a close, so does the life of one of its main characters.

Betty Francis (January Jones), the ex-wife of advertising executive extraordinaire Don Draper (Jon Hamm), was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. Betty, like most of the women of that era, has been routinely marginalized and dismissed, but her final storyline proved her character is a woman of poise and grace.

mad men betty handing sally letter

She remained calm while her husband Henry Francis (Christopher Stanley) freaked out and tried to force her into treatment, as if she were already at peace. He brought Sally Draper (Kiernan Shipka), her eldest daughter, home from school “to talk some sense into her.” What followed was one of the best Betty scenes of the series.

Add some extra joy to the life of the person who gave you yours.

Chocolates, flowers, and breakfast in bed are requirements, but how can you make mom even happier on her very own holiday?

“Oh, great, a 20% off coupon for Bed, Bath & Beyond. How thoughtful,” says a mom trying to hide her disappointment.

“A pre-made coupon from Everplans featuring gestures and tasks to make my life easier? Oh, dear family, you care. You, really, really care,” says a mom who received a bunch of the customized coupons below.

CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD AND PRINT THESE COUPONS

From Young Kiddies

mothers day coupon baby smiles

mothers day coupon baby fingers and toes

From Toddlers

mothers day coupon toddler toothbrush

Hulk smash property insurance premiums.

The last time Thor, Iron Man, Captain America, and the Hulk got together, New York City was left nearly in ruins (save for a few intrepid shawarma joints). So on the eve of their return in this summer’s epic blockbuster Avengers: Age Of Ultron we started thinking: What if all the fictitious damage left behind from action and disaster movies was real...and what would it mean to insurance providers? Check out all of the make-believe damage that would bankrupt the universe.

2012

2012 crumbling city

Nature gives the entire world a violent makeover. Oceans rise, streets disintegrate, mountains crumble and nothing is left standing. At all. The very notion of insurance, or civilization as we know it, was washed away in the debris. [Photo Source: Sony]

Independence Day

Independence Day spaceships over new york city

Aliens blow up the White House, Empire State Building, most of Los Angeles, and every other important landmark around the world. When the aliens are defeated we still have a planet, but the destruction would be in the trillions. Might as well toss away those insurance policies and grab a shovel to clean up this mess so we can rebuild. We will not go quietly into that damage assessment meeting! [Photo Source: 20th Century Fox]

Man of Steel

Man Of Steel superman rubble

The Avengers took on an entire army of aliens and only decimated certain areas of Manhattan. Meanwhile, Superman’s pursuit of a single, rogue Kryptonian basically turns the once proud Metropolis into a smoking crater. According to Buzzfeed, his “heroics” would have cost an estimated $750 billion worth of physical damage with an economic impact of $2 trillion! But, hey, he “saved” us! [Photo Source: Warner Brothers]

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If you’re a parent, or remotely human, keep some tissues handy.

Yes, we could have added more than three songs, but we just had to stop. There was something in our eye. (Tears. So many tears.) But let these tearful tunes serve as a lesson rather than becoming your reality.

Cat’s In The Cradle

It doesn’t get much sadder than Harry Chapin’s classic about busy dad missing all the important moments of his son’s life. When he finally has time to spend time with his son, it’s just too late.

One-To-Grow-On Lyric: “He learned to walk while I was away, and he was talkin' 'fore I knew it, and as he grew he'd say: ‘I'm gonna be like you, Dad. You know I'm gonna be like you.’"

Waterworks Lyric: “My boy was just like me.”

Bottom Line: Spend time with your kids because they grow up fast.

The Living Years

Mike & The Mechanics took a wrench to heartstrings everywhere when they sang about the communication gap between parents and children.

One-To-Grow-On Lyric: “It’s too late, when we die, to admit we don’t see eye-to-eye.”

Waterworks Lyric: “I wasn’t there that morning, when my father passed away. I didn’t get to tell him, all the things I had to say.”

Bottom Line: Discuss unresolved issues with your loved ones or regret it forever.

Landslide

Since this Stevie Nicks song can be interpreted in a bunch of different ways we identified common ground on which can all agree: It can turn anyone into whimpering mess. Especially when it comes on while you’re ordering at Subway. “I’ll take a five dollar footlo…*sniffle* why’s life so sad??? Of course I want the combo!”

One-To-Grow-On Lyric: “Can I sail through the changing ocean tides? Can I handle the seasons of my life?”

Waterworks Lyric: “Time makes you get bolder, children get older, I'm getting older too.”

Bottom Line: Don’t listen to too many sad songs while you’re at work or else you’ll get stares from co-workers wondering if you’re okay. Yes, co-workers, I’m fine… *lonely teardrop*

The last time the Chicago Cubs won the World Series was in 1908. The last time they made an appearance was in 1945. While this is hilarious for fans of other baseball franchises (except maybe the Seattle Mariners and Washington Nationals since neither have appeared in the Fall Classic), the championship drought has become a tradition and given rise to Chi-town’s sense of humor.

The late singer-songwriter and Cub-loyalist Steve Goodman lamented best in his aptly titled song “A Dying Cubs Fan’s Last Request.”

We also recently came across a hilarious comic from AmazingSuperPowers.com:

cubs fan wes and tony comic

We’re not here to pile on, Cubbies fans. Just trying to offer some preemptive comfort for when the inevitable late-summer, early-fall collapse happens.

Don’t worry, there’s always next year.

Funerals? Disaster areas? Concentration camps? Enough already!

Most problems in this world aren’t easy to fix. Disease. Hunger. Justin Bieber. But we’ve isolated one issue that can be completely eliminated overnight if we exercise the slightest inkling of decorum and self-control: Inappropriate selfies.

In the past we’ve covered the dubious trend of funeral selfies, where the clueless take shots of themselves at these solemn events, often including insensitive hashtags to garner more attention. This callous trend has also tarnished sacred memorials honoring Martin Luther King, Jr., Vietnam veterans, 9/11, and the Holocaust, to name a few. It’s so pervasive that it isn’t even that shocking when people are caught preening in front of their phones during ongoing disasters, as we recently witnessed firsthand when a building in NYC exploded, killing two in the blast and ensuing inferno.

In response, The New York Post ran this on its front page:

new york post front page

This is the only inappropriate selfie we will ever post on this site. We don’t want to promote this practice in any way, which is how we can all begin to eradicate the problem.

It might feel satisfying to see selfie-perpetrators shamed, but it doesn’t get to the root of the problem -- it makes it worse. Selfie-shaming either rewards the person who did it with undeserved attention they crave, or it continues to beat the guilty party into submission once they admit it was a terrible, thoughtless mistake.

The real questions we should be asking:
1. Why do people do this in the first place?

2. How do we stop it?

Oh, The Lack Of Humanity

selfie street sign

I’m no Dr. Phil, nor do I want to be, but selfies aren’t always about extreme narcissism. They’re usually harmless fun. The same way people used to turn their old point-and-shoot cameras on themselves when they didn’t want to bother a passing stranger, smartphones have made it simple to become a party of one. Want to show your best friend you’re at the Grand Canyon while she’s stuck in her cubicle? Want to make your kids laugh with a goofy face while you’re away on a business trip? Want to see how your hair looks without having to get up and walk to a mirror? Selfies can be endearing, funny, and make you feel good about how you’re looking that day.

But with great technology often comes little responsibility. Nearly every human has a phone that can take pixel-perfect photos and beam them around the entire planet in a matter of seconds. Moments that would once fade into our memory are now captured forever and sometimes shared beyond our control.

If you didn’t grow up with this technology, you’re probably thankful. I’m terrified to think of what 15 or 20-year-old me would be posting on the Internet if it was this seamless. So rather than judge and wag fingers, let’s accept this technology is tailor-made for bad judgement.

It’s like riding a motorcycle: It’s not about if you’ll get into an accident, it’s when. The severity of the accident could range from a tiny skid-out to full-on catastrophe, but it will happen at some point.

The amount of photos being shared online is staggering. According to Business Insider, in 2013 Facebook alone accounted for 350 million photo uploads each day. KCPB’s 2014 Internet report puts the total number of photos uploaded and shared per-day at 1.8 billion.

With those kind of numbers it’s understandable that a portion might be in poor taste or downright offensive. It’s also reasonable to think that the majority of the photos you take can easily disappear into the infinity never to be seen or heard from again.

On the other hand, it’s this perceived anonymity and constant onslaught of media options that land us in trouble. It ups the stakes to garner attention. Along the way you might share something that your friends or Instagram/Facebook/Twitter followers would find funny; once it expands beyond those parameters you will be judged by strangers who know nothing about you or your sense of humor. Even the most harmless intentions taken out of context can appear nasty and offensive, which is why we must all take swift and decisive measures.

Free Your Mind, And The Rest Will Follow

Now, for the solution to this problem…

STOP DOING IT!

It’s really that simple. Here’s an easy-to-remember checklist to help you avoid the inevitable anguish and outrage caused by an inappropriate selfie.

  • Before posing for a selfie, take a split second to ask yourself: “Is this in poor taste?”
  • If you have terrible taste, ask yourself: “What would my mom say if she saw this photo?”
  • If your mom has the same taste as you, ask yourself: “How would I feel if I was in pain and saw someone snapping a selfie despite my misfortune?”

Use these examples as your guide:

  • If my apartment building had just blown up and everything I owned was gone?
  • If I finally got to see my uncle’s name on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial and was interrupted by a reflection of some disrespecting, selfie-taking jackass behind me?
  • If my parents were treated like second-class citizens, forced to the back of the bus, and beaten on the streets for standing up for their rights?
  • If my grandparents were massacred in the Holocaust?
  • If I lost my daughter in the World Trade Center?
  • If I caught someone snapping a selfie in front of my mother’s casket?

When it’s your pain it’s a different story, right?

If after all this self-reflection you still have an uncontrollable urge to take an inappropriate selfie, DON'T post it on any of your accounts. Treat it like a letter you wrote in anger but have no intention of sending. And, if upon deeper reflection and soul searching, you still need to post it to the world, seek medical attention immediately.

Bringing the topic of Advance Directives, Living Wills, and Health Care Proxies to a younger generation.

The popular and stylish Refinery29 wrote an insightful and compelling article on why everyone needs a Living Will (a.k.a. Advance Directive), which was aptly titled "The Critical Decision You Haven't Made — But Should."

And we're not just gushing over this because Everplans was mentioned in the article. Seriously! We're excited when anyone writes or speaks about the importance of this document. (You can download yours here: State-By-State Advance Directive Forms.) Refinery29 cites a number of statistics (example: "82% of people think it’s 'important' to record their [medical] wishes in writing, but only 23% have done so") and explains how an Advance Directive details the treatments you either want or don't want when you're unable to communicate your decisions due to a serious illness or injury.

refinery29 graphic regarding living wills

Here's a highlight of their interview with our co-founder Abby Schneiderman about the issue:

While planning her wedding in 2010, Schneiderman began to wonder whether there were similar services available to people preparing for a different milestone: death. Today, Everplans’ vast library of articles addresses questions from what to wear to a funeral to how to write a living will. As Schneiderman describes, “We created a platform that helps people create and store and share all of the important information that their family needs in case something happens to them — wills, life insurance policies, healthcare proxies, advance directives, even burial wishes and online accounts.”

Read the rest of this compelling article on Refinery29.

OK, the term crash is a bit of an overstatement...

We were invited to attend but we like to dramatize our headlines. Everplans brought a spark to the NFP conference in Orlando this week, handing out phone chargers and chatting up some of the best advisors from across the country. Our team took this opportunity to get feedback from the experts who live in the trenches of the financial world, and the feedback was overwhelmingly positive. As we launch our professional platform it's especially heartening to know that our message resonates with the very experts to whom we seek to provide services. 

Abby Schneiderman Working The Room At NFP
A candid shot of Everplans Co-founder Abby Schneiderman offering up professional planning solutions

A big Everplans thanks goes out to the world-class team at NFP for hosting us. Also thanks to Orlando for being warmer than New York, even though we never had a chance to go outdoors.

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Spring forward, indeed.

On Sunday March 8, 2015, most of America will be setting clocks forward one hour. (Way to be rebels, Arizona and Hawaii.) It often reopens the annual questions, discussions, and debates around the purpose of Daylight Saving Time. Why do we even need it anymore? Isn’t it about farmers or something? Is it a clock-industry conspiracy to get us to buy timepieces we don’t need?

We don’t care about any of this. Our only focus is the sheer number of clocks that require changing. Credit modern technology with making the shift somewhat easier, since cell phones and computers update automatically. But there’s always other clocks around the house that need an old fashioned touch -- often the same ones you have to reset when the power goes out.

We tried to identify every time-keeping device you might have that requires manual attention. Even if it’s as simple as flipping a switch to “DST mode,” think of this alphabetized list of 16 time-related items as a way to add a little more sunshine into your life.

Alarm Clocks / Clock Radio

vintage alarm clock

This is probably the first clock you adjust in your bedroom, but what about the other rooms? You might even have one in the shower. Don’t let them feel left out.

Answering Machine

answering machine

Yes, people still use these.

Car Clock

car dashboard clock

This used to be really simple back when a car clock was just a clock. Now you have to navigate menus, touchscreens, and obtain a degree in computer engineering. For the lucky few, your car’s time might update automatically. If that’s the case, ignore this tip and carry on down the list, your majesty.

Coffee Maker

coffee maker timer

For coffee lovers, this is very serious business. Do you really want to roll out of bed the weekend after losing an hour and not have your coffee ready Monday morning? Didn’t think so.