Whether young or old it’s not too early to plan for the worst.
Nobody likes to discuss death or incapacity yet we will all experience it in one way or another. If you want to have any control over what happens after you are incapacitated or pass away, YOU MUST PLAN AHEAD of time. Through a Living Will, more commonly called an Advance Directive, you can tell medical professionals how you want to be treated in case of incapacity. Through a Last Will & Testament, you can tell the world how you want your responsibilities met and your assets distributed.
The only way to make sure your wishes are known and followed is by preparing ahead of time.
It’s pretty obvious that once you die you can no longer make it known what your wishes were. What is less commonly considered is that once you are mentally incapacitated, or physically incapacitated to the point that you cannot communicate your wishes, the result is pretty much the same. Your wishes have no legal effect if made after the point of incapacity.
Protect your loved ones from having to make the hard decisions.
You may want to give some loved ones a power of attorney over healthcare decisions but many of our clients want to protect their family members from having to make certain decisions. Let’s say you do not want to be resuscitated or placed on life support. If the decision to “pull the plug” is made by one of your family members it may cause resentment from other family members. By giving advance directive on acceptable medical treatments through your living will, you can save your family members from having to make life and death decisions.
Pick those individuals you want to speak and act on your behalf.
You can select those individuals that you want speaking and acting on your behalf through a Durable Power of Attorney. A Power of Attorney gives a person or persons the right to act on your behalf as if they stood in your shoes. Durable means it “survives incapacity”. A Power of Attorney can be general, meaning it allows them to take any action, or it can be specific, such as a healthcare power of attorney, a financial power of attorney, a real estate power of attorney or a child care power of attorney. You can have one person holding all of the powers of attorney, or different people holding only some specific power of attorney.
Empower your loved ones to take care of your obligations.
Besides allowing other individuals to act on your behalf a power of attorney also empowers them to meet your obligations. A real estate power of attorney would allow for the sale or transfer of real estate, allowing your loved ones to meet your obligations with your home or business property. A financial power of attorney would allow your loved ones to access your bank accounts, to pay your bills, and to make decisions regarding your investments.
Make sure they get the information they need to make informed decisions.
When it comes to healthcare decision making, a healthcare power of attorney is not enough. The healthcare power of attorney may give the individual the right to make the healthcare decisions, but ironically it doesn’t give them the right to see your medical records. Due to the Health Information Portability and Accountability Act, the hospital or healthcare provider cannot legally share your medical information without a HIPAA Waiver.
Estate Planning with G&G Law, LLC
The form and execution requirements for estate planning documents are very specific. The form the document takes, the language it contains, and whether it is witnessed, notarized, or both, can have a drastic effect on whether that document is legally enforceable. Since these documents are usually not scrutinized until after the point of incapacity or death, it is often impossible to cure any document defects and the result is as if the documents never existed in the first place.
Don’t put your estate plan at risk. Hire trained professionals to handle your estate planning and document drafting and execution.
G&G Law, LLC, operator of LivingWillCT.com, is a Connecticut law firm with licensed and insured Connecticut attorneys who will handle your estate plan. Our attorneys use a dual review system. You will meet with two attorneys to discuss the goals of your estate plan. One of the attorneys will draft your documents and the other will review them for accuracy and legal effect.
Unlimited revisions prior to signing.
We will amend the documents and their language, within the confines of the law, until you are 100% satisfied. If you are not satisfied with the service you receive and do not wish to sign the documents then there is no fee.