Archive for October, 2013

Health Care Estate Planning

October 4, 2013 Leave a comment

There are several documents involved in estate planning related to one’s health care needs, which are listed below.

As the unknowns of Obamacare are being unveiled, having just become available to American consumers October 1, 2013, one’s health care related estate planning needs are also in flux.

– First, a Power of Attorney for Health Care is important to convey a trusted person or set of persons to act in your place when you are not able to do so in regards to your health care needs (A separate Power of Attorney for Finances is also highly recommended).
– Second, a Living Will is important to ensure that one’s needs and desires are effected in relation to your health care decisions, particularly for artificial hydration, nutrition, and resuscitation involved primarily in terminal illness or emergency medical situations.

Other estate planning documents are also important to holistically address one’s health care and financial needs:
– First, a Will and/or Revocable Living Trust
– Second, a Financial Power of Attorney, as aforementioned, to ensure your financial affairs can continue to be conducted by a person or set of persons you trust should you be unable to so conduct them.
– Third, beneficiary designations for financial instruments such as bank accounts and retirement accounts are necessary, and prevent the need for such accounts to be dealt with through probate should you pass away.
– Fourth, an Ethical will, which is optional, can be a helpful way to ensure one’s spiritual and philosophical values as well as requests of a non-legal nature are solidly communicated to one’s friends and family
– Fifth, for small business owners only, a succession plan is important to ensure that those you would want to take control of your business are duly appointed to do so through this document.

A competent estate planning attorney can ensure you have these documents put in place while you have the competency to execute them. Don’t wait until it’s too late, as your heirs and the legal system may not properly protect your interests if you haven’t appropriately created the documents indicating your intent in regards to your health care needs and estate planning.

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