Is there anyone sad to say goodbye to 2020? For many of us, 2021 epitomizes the symbolic renewal of a new year, with an extra kick of life motivation. In what ways will you channel this energy?
Everyone should tend to their personal affairs in some manner. For some this may be a simple review of existing documents or an update of contact lists and account inventories. However, if you are reading this and you know you still have not taken care of those basic documents everyone must have – Now is the time!
There are three key components to estate planning: (1) distributing assets at your death; (2) managing your assets and personal affairs during life; and (3) advocating your health care treatment. (Learn more about Estate Planning here.)
You can accomplish asset distribution in various ways, from the simplicity of joint account ownership or beneficiary designations to the traditional “Last Will and Testament” or the more complex revocable living trust. What is appropriate for you will depend upon your individual situation, including your goals, family situation, and assets. You can often achieve your goals by naming beneficiaries on your Will. In other situations, a trust will ensure your wishes are met with the greatest efficiency. (Learn more about Trusts and Wills.)
Creating a comprehensive, durable power of attorney will address the “managing your affairs” objective. If you cannot or do not want to tend to a particular financial or personal task, a pre-designated agent can use a power of attorney to act on your behalf.
For health-related matters, an advance health care directive appoints an individual to advocate for your medical needs and treatment preferences. In addition, authorizing certain family or friends to access medical information with a HIPAA release may also provide assistance with your health care needs.
So, let’s get motivated! Begin by scheduling a Consultation with Bob Michaels today!
Bob Michaels is extremely passionate about providing the best possible legal experience for his clients, and focuses his practice on elder law, estate planning, business, and real estate matters. Bob has been able to provide piece of mind and a solid foundation to many folks in the Puget Sound area over the years and wants to provide resources and relevant information whenever he can.