If your child is 18 years or older, then your child needs Estate Planning! Upon reaching 18, your child is an adult. Below is a list of the 5 documents every person aged 18 years or older should have, whether they are in college or receiving social security.
Health Care Surrogate. Who will make health care decisions for your adult child? If the parents are divorced, then who will be talking to the doctor on your child’s behalf? If the child is away at college, is there someone close by that could help in a medical situation?
HIPAA Release. This is very important. You do not have access to your adult child’s medical records. Your child is an adult and must choose who can access his/her records. This needs to be in writing.
Durable Power of Attorney. Who can access your child’s bank account and take care of all of their financial needs? Credit cards? Bank accounts? Student Loans? Tangible assets such as a Car? A Pet? Social Media Accounts? Again, your child needs to appoint a Durable Power of Attorney and an alternate to help them if they are unable to act on their own behalf.
Will. Even for young adults with “no assets”, a Personal Representative (usually a parent) will have the power to administer all assets, debts and tangible assets. The fact is that your child must choose someone. Simply stated, everyone needs a Personal Representative named in a will just in case there is something to do.
Living Will. Most people would like to have a Living Will. Of course there are some personal and/or religious considerations regarding the use of a Living Will. These concerns should be discussed with family and an Estate Planning Attorney.
This is a very basic list and description of these necessary documents. Please feel free to contact me for further information or to schedule an appointment at www.tampaattorneys.org or 813-907-9807.