Planning For The Contingencies Of Aging
People are living longer. This means that making a plan for how you’d like to live is more important than ever. It is easy, but ill-advised, to brush off these decisions, hoping that your family will know what you want. But this puts an incredible amount of pressure on your spouse and children. Creating your own plan lifts this burden from them.
At Law Office of Diane St. Yves, PLLC, in Houston, we are here to help. We assist with many types of estate planning tools.
The ‘Big Three’ – Documents Every Person Should Have
While there are many different tools available for different goals and estates, there are three documents (or tools) that everyone can benefit from. These are:
- A last will and testament (called a “will”)
- A power of attorney (or POA)
- A heath care directive (also called a living will, may include a proxy)
There are other tools that it may be prudent for you to have, but these documents will provide a solid foundation for your estate plan. We can discuss your wishes in a consultation.
What The ‘Big Three’ Do
A will is a way to leave a lasting legacy. It details “who gets what,” but it also communicates who should raise your minor children and how your estate should be handled after your death. If you do not create a will, then the state of Texas will decide who shall raise your children and who will get your things. This can be a cause for arguments and strife and can break families apart.
Power of attorney can be temporary or last during your incapacitation (durable). This is assigned to the person whom you trust to take care of your finances. They will pay your bills, collect debts owed and be able to sell your property should the need arise. This can be a different person than your executor. The executor manages your estate and pays your bills after your death. Without a POA, should you become incapacitated, your family may need to pursue a guardianship.
A health care directive tells medical professionals and your family which types of treatments you want in the event that you are unable to communicate your preferences. This plan can be as simple or detailed as you’d like. You can also designate someone to make health care decisions for you. This person is called your “heath care proxy.” This person can be a spouse, adult child, sibling or trusted friend. In selecting this proxy, make sure that they are prepared to carry out your wishes. Select someone who knows you and who will respect what you want, even if that happens to conflict with their own ideas or beliefs.
Set Up A Time To Make A Plan
Do not wait until an emergency pushes your hand. Take the time to schedule a consultation today. Call our team at 281-816-4258 or connect online. Serving clients throughout the entire Houston metro area.