There’s no doubt that it’s an extremely scary time for many people. In the age of COVID-19, the idea of becoming sick and unable to make decisions for yourself and your family is terrifying. However, you can help to alleviate some of these fears by establishing a comprehensive estate plan.
Do I Need More Than a Will?
While having a will is extremely important, a will is not in and of itself an estate plan. It does not allow another person to make decisions on your behalf should you become unable to do so. Additionally, it does not provide a manner for someone else to do your banking for you, make medical decisions for you, and more. But with a comprehensive estate plan, you can set yourself up for just about anything – especially protecting and distributing your assets.
As the coronavirus continues to rage against the people of the world, it’s very important that we take the time now to think about who will take care of your financial decisions or make your medical decisions for you should you become unable. It may be shocking, but neither of these decisions can be made – not to mention enforced – with just the existence of a will.
A financial power of attorney is someone who can act on your behalf to protect your property and carry out all of your financial affairs. By designating someone as your financial power of attorney, you give him or her the authority to:
- Pay your bills
- Make deposits
- Write checks
- Sell/purchase assets
- Sign tax returns
If you do not appoint a financial power of attorney, it’s likely that your family will have to petition the probate court to appoint a guardian on your behalf. This is not an ideal situation, as it takes a lot of time and money. But it can be avoided so long as you properly plan ahead.
So a financial power of attorney can handle your financial affairs, but they are not responsible for your medical care. That’s where a health care power of attorney comes into play. A health care power of attorney can make medical decisions for you in the event that you cannot make them for yourself.
These are important decisions, but they are just the beginning of a strong estate plan to protect yourself, your loved ones and your property. Meeting with a qualified estate-planning attorney can ensure you are protected should the unthinkable happen.
Biddle Law Can Help with the Creation of a Comprehensive Estate Plan
While these two appointments can make a massive difference, they aren’t the only part of your plan. No matter how old you are, having a comprehensive estate plan is always appropriate. But in order to establish one, it’s in your best interest to speak with a qualified estate planning attorney who can answer any questions you may have and walk you through the process. At Biddle Law, we care about your future together and want to assist in protecting your interests. To learn more or to schedule a consultation, contact us today!