There is no single perfect way to plan for the future. If you are considering what you may need for your estate plan, it may be helpful for you to look at the tools available to you beyond a basic will. A will is a good place to start, as this is a document that allows you to decide what will happen to your property after you pass, but most people need more than this. You likely need to take additional steps to get the full amount of protection you need and deserve.
After creating your will and addressing your concerns related to your property after you pass, you may also benefit from considering how you can protect your interests in the event of your incapacitation. One way you can do this is through power of attorney, which is a legal tool that allows you to name someone to act on your behalf in case you cannot speak for yourself.
How does it work?
There are different types of powers of attorney. Many people find that they benefit from a financial power of attorney, which would allow the agent to make financial decisions on your behalf in the event of incapacitation. A health care power of attorney gives an agent the ability to make important medical decisions for you in case you cannot speak for yourself. The person you name as the agent in any power of attorney document should be responsible and trustworthy.
The person you choose to act as your agent should be assertive, responsible, trustworthy and capable. Choosing the wrong agent could result in complications for you and your loved ones. It is possible to change the designation of the agent if circumstances have changed since you originally created the document. Before you make this designation, you will also need to discuss this role with that individual.
Planning for long-term needs
It is not always easy to consider what you may need if you cannot speak for yourself. However, if you believe that you may benefit from additional protections as part of your complete estate plan, you may find it helpful to discuss this option with an experienced professional. This guidance will provide you with insight regarding the most effective estate planning tools you will need now and in the future.