Preparing for the future can often include crafting legal documents that let your family know what medical treatments you want in a serious situation and where you want your assets to go after death.
As you go through estate planning, you may wonder what documents are typically included.
According to the AARP, having advance directives can help hospitals and your loved ones decide what to do if you are permanently unconscious and cannot respond. Writing down what kinds of treatments or procedures you want, such as whether you want dialysis or tube feeding, can help your loved ones pick the medical choices you want.
This document commonly contains instructions for where your assets will go or who will receive them after your death. These assets can include any item that you want to pass on, such as family heirlooms like fine china or even your home and car.
You may think because you only have a few assets or that your children verbally promise you that they will figure it out that you do not have to legally make a will. However, writing a will is an important part of an estate plan and guarantees that others will follow these plans.
Power of attorney
Appointing someone to carry out your medical and financial choices outlined in any documents you write is an important task. This person is responsible for speaking on your behalf to doctors about your choices, as well as accessing important financial savings like your pension or IRA.
Choosing someone you know will respect your wishes can help you build a cohesive estate plan.