Findlaw:  Whitney Houston's unexpected death at age 48 is tragic, but it also offers lessons in estate planning: It's never too early (or too late) to create a will, and it's also a good idea to create a separate document to spell out funeral and burial plans.

Whitney Houston's funeral is set for Saturday in New Jersey, at the church where the singer first took to the stage, Reuters reports. But there was a family dispute about Houston's burial plans: Some wanted her buried in New Jersey, others in Atlanta, according to the website TMZ.

Such disagreements may have been avoidable, had Whitney Houston left her final wishes in writing — and not just in a will.

Indeed, Whitney Houston did leave a will, which likely names her only child Bobbi Kristina Brown, 18, as her main beneficiary, ABC News reports. But the probate process can take months, and a person's will may not be accessible during that time.

Read more about estate planning lessons to be learned from Whitney Houston's death.