People put off estate planning for several reasons. Maybe you don’t want to face the idea of your death or that your family will know what to do when you die. Others believe they don’t have enough assets to need a plan. However, failing to plan does not stop the inevitable; it only makes it harder for the people left to make decisions. Make today the day you sit down and develop a plan with the following key components.
Advanced Medical Directives
Sometimes called a living will, this document gives another individual power to make decisions about your care if you are unable to do so yourself. Depending on where you live, these directives could take several forms (and names), but they all allow caregivers to know exactly what you would want to be done. If you have specific ideas about life support, hospice care or other medical treatments, put them in an official medical directive.
Power of Attorney
Not all decisions are medical. Your family may need to make financial decisions, or conduct transactions on your behalf if you are unable to do it yourself. A power of attorney allows them to do so legally. These can be blanket forms for all decisions or limited to certain transactions. Either way, they give your attorney-in-fact the power to act on your behalf without having to go through a guardianship or conservator process.
This is one that most people think of when they hear estate planning, and it does play an important role after your death. However, the cookie-cutter style documents that many people have is often not sufficient to address concerns. Make sure your will is personalized through comprehensive estate planning services Fairfax VA to meet your unique family and financial situation to avoid disputes after your death.
Everyone should develop an estate plan to ensure their wishes are followed. Key components include a will, medical directives and powers of attorney.