Don’t Forget About You in Your Estate Plan

How can my estate plan help to take care of me during my life?

Most of us think of estate planning as a necessary step to protect our loved ones after death.  Through the use of wills and trusts, we can ensure our spouses, children, and other loved ones are provided for in the event of our death.  While estate planning may seem to be all about others, you are in fact the most important person in your estate plan.  Your estate plan will provide critical protection for you during your lifetime.  Take a look at some vital documents that should form part of your estate plan below.

Medical Power of Attorney 

If you become incapacitated, it is crucial that a trusted loved one have the power to make health care decisions for you.  For individuals who are not married to your significant other, being without an advanced health care directive or medical power of attorney can create a thorny situation.  Taking the time now to complete your medical power of attorney form will protect your health in the event you are ever unable to make your own informed decisions.  

Living Will

In a living will, you can make vital decisions as to what medical care and treatment you want, or don’t want, if you are critically ill.  The individual named in your medical power of attorney is then charged with carrying out these wishes.  Your living will is often created in conjunction with your medical power of attorney.  In addition to ensuring your health is managed in the manner you desire, your living will also protects your loved ones from having to grapple with difficult issues about end of life care.

Durable Power of Attorney 

A durable power of attorney protects your finances if you become physically or mentally incapacitated.  In your financial power of attorney, you can name a loved one who will have the power to make financial decisions for your benefit.  A financial agent can write checks on your behalf, speak with financial advisors, and much more. Selecting a trusted individual to serve as your financial agent is critically important.  Contact an estate planning lawyer today to get started with crafting an estate plan that protects not just your loved ones, but you as well.