It’s Important to Plan End of Life Decisions

It’s Important to Plan End of Life Decisions

An effective estate plan is more than a decision on how to distribute your assets after death and should be developed at the law offices of a qualified estate planning attorney. A will is an important starting point in the process, but may not always be enough depending on your specific situation. There are a variety of estate planning tools that can be utilized to give you and your family security and peace of mind. A will is a written document that outlines how a person wants their assets and property distributed upon their death. If applicable it will indicate who will become the guardian of minor children or disabled dependents. A will also sets out who will administer the estate.

Using quality legal representation to assist you in preparing your will can help ensure your wishes are followed. Dying without a will or leaving an ill-prepared will can lead to confusion, contests by family members and increased probate costs. A trust is used to manage assets or property. There are different types of trusts available depending on the situation. For instance, a living trust is used to transfer assets to a trust to be administrated for the benefit of the person until death. A testamentary trust is established in a will and usually prepares for the financial care of minor children or disabled dependents.

A successful and enforceable trust should be prepared by an attorney to ensure it meets all legal requirements. Other important estate planning tools include living wills and powers of attorney. A power of attorney is used to assign personal powers to an agent to act on your behalf in a legal capacity. Different types of powers of attorney include limited, general, durable and financial.

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For instance, a durable power of attorney allows your agent to act in your capacity during your incapacitation. Utilizing a power of attorney in this regard helps avoid the state becoming involved in your affairs. Quality legal representation can help you understand what type of documents applies to your unique situation and ensure they are executed correctly. A living will, also referred to as an advanced health care directive, is used to specify your wishes concerning end of life decisions. Specifically, it is used to communicate to family members and medical professionals what life-saving measures, if any, should be taken.

Using an attorney to help draft your living will can help guarantee there are no misunderstandings regarding your last requests. Developing an estate plan has become a necessary part of life. It is important to interview and hire a qualified attorney from a law firm capable of handling your estate planning needs.