Do I Need Anything Else Besides A Will?
Creating an estate plan that addresses your financial interests and assets, your health, and the future security of your family is hard work. Oftentimes a traditional will or trust might not meet all your needs. At the Law Office of Sharon C. Stodghill, we provide knowledgeable and compassionate assistance to clients needing to expand their estate plans beyond the basics to incorporate ancillary estate planning documents to meet specific needs.
Planning For Your Care In The Event Of Incapacity
You probably do not event want to think about the possibility of an illness or injury that renders you unable to make health care or financial decisions on your own. Frankly, it is a depressing thing to think about.
Although we understand the emotional aspects of advanced planning, we know that it is vitally important that you make your wishes known to your family ahead of time. This will help to both ensure your proper care and prevent disputes between your loved ones. Ancillary estate planning documents often include:
- Financial powers of attorney
- Advance health directives or “Living wills”
- Guardianship designations
- Medical powers of attorney
- HIPAA release and authorizations
- Designation of a guardian for minor children
- Appointment of Agent to Control Disposition of Remains
Do I Need Any Of These Ancillary Estate Planning Documents?
The best way to answer this question is with a question. Would you rather choose who can legally provide assistance to you or would you rather a court alone decide for you at a greater monetary cost? By clearly designating who you would like to be in control in the event a need arises, you can prevent a lot of family conflict saving time and money.
Powers of attorney grant a designated person the legal right to make medical or financial decisions on your behalf. These can be particularly useful, possibly avoiding a guardianship and protecting your assets for later generations.
In the event that you become incapacitated (a likely occurrence as our life expectancies grow longer and longer), an advance health care directive expresses your specific wishes about your care. This not only ensures that your wishes will be honored, but it also saves your loved ones the stress and anxiety associated with having to make difficult decisions about your long-term or end-of-life care.