Do I need an estate plan?
Yes, most adults should have at a minimum a basic estate plan in place. A basic estate plan could include a simple will, durable (financial power of attorney), advance healthcare directive (medical power of attorney), and a HIPAA release. Michigan has statutory requirements that must be followed when creating estate plan documents.
Why do I need an estate plan?
An estate plan allows you to choose how you want your assets distributed after your death in accordance with your wishes. However, many people don't realize that during your lifetime an estate plan is just as equally important. This is because part of an estate can include you choosing a person/persons to make decisions on your behalf in the event of a temporary or permanent disability. This disability could be physical as a result of an accident or mental as a result of dementia in your later years of life. Your attorney-in-fact (agent) and patient advocate will only be given those duties/responsibilities that you designate in the power of attorney documents. If you have minor children where would they go in the event of an emergency or your untimely death? You can designate this in your documents. There are many other reasons why you should have an estate plan. Make an appointment today to draft an estate plan that fits "your" needs.
I am a college student, do I really need an estate plan?
Yes, if you are 18 years of age or older you are now an adult for purposes of creating an estate plan. This is important because generally your parents/guardians are no longer allowed access to your educational records, or to speak on your behalf. Having a durable power of attorney and advance healthcare directive will allow you to choose who can make changes/decisions on your behalf in case of a temporary or permanent disability.
I currently have an estate plan, how often does it need updating?
Generally, you should review your estate plan every 3-5 years or earlier if you have had changes to your current situation. Including but not limited to births, deaths, marriage, divorce, new accounts, real estate purchases, real estate disposition, or other assets acquired or disposed of since the documents were created. In addition, family relationships may play a role as you may have to re-evaluate your beneficiaries, attorney-in-fact (agent), and patient advocates just to name a few.
The above is for informational use only and does not create an attorney-client relationship or constitute legal advice. Please make an appointment to discuss your specific case and create an estate plan that fits "your" needs.