October 5th, 2012
There are three basic estate planning documents that all individuals should consider when making a life plan strategy. The specific content of each document will depend on personal and family circumstances, but, everyone should consider having the following documents in place:
Last Will and Testament – A Last Will and Testament is a legal document that includes your personal instructions regarding the distributions of your assets upon your death. The preparation of a Will allows you to designate the beneficiaries of your estate. Your Will may also name a person to serve as executor of your estate.
A Will may also name a guardian for any minor children and designate the age when the children will receive their inheritance. Parents of a child with disabilities can also express their preference relative to their child’s future care, education, job training and living arrangements and even establish a trust to supplement governmental benefits received by the disabled child.
Power of Attorney – A Power of Attorney allows you to appoint an agent to make decisions concerning your legal and financial matters in the event you cannot do so for yourself. If something catastrophic happens and you become incapacitated, having a Power of Attorney in place can avoid the alternative of having a Court appoint a guardian, this could take several months and cost several thousand dollars.
Health Care Proxy / Living Will – A Health Care Proxy/Living Will allows you to designate an agent to make health care decisions in the event you are unable to do so yourself. It also allows you to document your wishes concerning treatment in the event you become terminally ill.
The simple act of planning ahead can assure that your personal wishes are followed.
April 27th, 2012
Durable Power of Attorney: A Durable Power of Attorney is a legal document in which you appoint an agent to assist you with handling your financial affairs and to make financial decisions on your behalf during your lifetime, either for convenience or in the event you become incompetent or disabled. A Durable Power of Attorney can help avoid the necessity of a costly and protracted guardianship proceeding. A Durable Power of Attorney remains in full effect throughout your lifetime and terminates only upon your death or revocation.
Why do you need a Power of Attorney?
March 9th, 2011
Issues to Consider When Evaluating the Need for a New or Revised Will / Estate Planning Documents
As spring rolls around and we get ready for warmer weather, our thoughts turn to spring cleaning. Take this time to clean up your current estate planning documents and determine if they need to be revised. It is suggested that your estate planning documents be reviewed every five years to make sure they still comply with your wishes. If any of the categories listed below apply to you, it may be a good idea to embrace the season and make the necessary changes to your Last Will and Testament, Living Will/Health Care Proxy or Power of Attorney documents.
October 28th, 2009
July 31st, 2009
A Power of Attorney is an important document that allows you (“the principal”) to appoint an agent to make decisions concerning your legal and financial matters in the event you are unable to do so for yourself. If you have not executed a Power of Attorney document and you become incapacitated, a guardianship court proceeding will be required to authorize someone to make legal decisions on your behalf. A guardianship proceeding can take several months and cost several thousand dollars to complete. The good news is that creation of a valid Power of Attorney can avoid the necessity of a guardianship proceeding. As such, the execution of a Power of Attorney document is a very important estate planning tool.
March 16th, 2009
EVALUATING THE NEED FOR NEW OR REVISED ESTATE PLANNING DOCUMENTS
Given the current state of the world economy and recent local events, many of our clients have expressed a desire get their financial and household business matters in order. There are three basic estate planning documents that all individuals should consider when planning and organizing a life plan strategy, although the specific content of those documents will differ by personal circumstances.