I’ve been asked this question countless times over the past few months: “What’s it like to introduce a service that makes people think about dying when that’s all that’s on everyone’s mind?”
COVID-19 caught us all by surprise, and my co-founder and I were no exception. It’s been one year since my co-founder, Arin, and I quit our jobs as lawyers to start Epilogue. We wanted to create a world where online estate planning was simple, not to mention accessible and affordable.
Over the last 365 days, we grew our team, spent countless hours conducting market research, and built iteration after iteration of a product we knew people needed. And just as we were about to launch—KAPOW—COVID-19 hit and changed everything.
As students of morals and ethics, the idea of whether or not it was an appropriate time to launch weighed on us. Was it the right time to launch an online Wills business just as the novel coronavirus hijacked global awareness?
We went back and forth and, ultimately, decided to forge ahead (albeit with a slightly revised go-to-market strategy.)
There are three main reasons we knew it was the right time to launch Epilogue.
1. We are more than just lawyers.
We are more than just lawyers-turned-entrepreneurs. We are also husbands, fathers, sons, and friends.
The reason we started Epilogue in the first place is that we care deeply about the health and safety of our community and want to make it easy for people to future-proof their lives. Keeping people and their loved ones safe has always been and will continue to be the number one priority throughout this pandemic and beyond. Because at the end of the day estate planning isn't about what you have, it's who you love.
2. Provide peace of mind
People panic in times of crisis. Fear and vulnerability make you want to hug loved ones and plan for the future. Nothing like a pandemic to make you question your mortality and give you a new perspective on life, amirite!
The last thing we wanted to do with the launch of Epilogue is to take advantage of that fear—but we also felt a duty to help. We knew Epilogue had the power to provide comfort and peace of mind for people during this deeply uncertain time.
3. Make estate planning more accessible.
As COVID-19 descended upon Canada, businesses and offices shut down in a matter of days, if not hours. Access to estate planning services became limited with lawyers’ offices temporarily shuttered, and limited online estate planning options in Canada.
Aside from the physical barriers of making a Will, there are also financial barriers. Making a Will with a lawyer can burn a hole in your wallet you might not be able to afford.
We just spent a year pouring everything we had into building a tool to bridge this very gap and make estate planning simple and accessible, all from the comfort of your own home. We created Epilogue to make future planning easier for Canadians by making it accessible online and more affordable.
With the ‘new normal’ keeping us homebound, we’ve all had time to step back and re-examine what is most important to us. Whatever and whoever that is for you, you can now protect them and their future while sitting on your couch, wearing slippers. For me, what matters most is my wife and 2-year old twins—what about you?
We don’t know what the future holds, especially during a time like this. What we do know, however, is that your story doesn’t end with you.
Now, you can control your own narrative with an online estate planning service like Epilogue. We couldn’t be more excited to offer this support to our fellow Canadians! Epilogue’s mission is simple—democratize estate planning for all Canadians. And we hope by launching the business during this weird time, it can give you some of the stability and peace-of-mind you crave.
We WILL get through this together.