As summer begins and you celebrate your child's graduation from high school, your attention turns to preparing them for their first year in college. On your to-do list should be two important documents that young adults should have before they go out on their own: Power of Attorney forms for Property and Health Care.
These two estate planning documents are essential for young adults who are likely away from their family for the first time and living on their own. While most people associate power of attorney forms with older individuals, it is important to know that in many states parents do not have the authority to make health care and financial decisions for their children once they turn 18. That means that if a child over the age of 18 is in an accident or becomes sick or disabled, even temporarily, a parent may need court approval to act on their own child’s behalf.
The Power of Attorney for Health Care authorizes an agent the individual chooses to make health care decisions on potential treatment, to prolong someone’s life, to donate organs, or to simply discuss a medical issue with your child's health care provider.
The Power of Attorney for Property allows an agent the individual names to pay bills and handle finances if the individual is unable to do so.
Although the forms are not complicated and may be available online, it is advisable to contact an attorney who handles estate planning to confirm the documents are completed correctly. The cost of preparing these forms should not be more than a few hundred dollars and is well worth the price for peace of mind in an emergency.
If you have any questions about preparing powers of attorney or any other estate planning questions, please feel free to contact Glick and Trostin, LLC at 312-346-8258.
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