At Skeeters, Bennett, Wilson & Humphrey we help clients prepare for the unexpected events that occur in life, as well as plan their estates to make it easier on survivors. An estate plan will normally consist of a durable power of attorney for health care and personal care, a general durable power of attorney, and a will.
A durable power of attorney for health care gives a trusted friend or family member the power to make health decisions when an individual is no longer capable of making health care decisions. It is a “special” power of attorney that gives its holder only the right to make decisions regarding medical attention and services. The holder cannot use this power for any other purpose.
A general power of attorney designates a person as an attorney-in-fact, giving that person the power to make a broad range of financial and property decisions when an individual is no longer capable of making such decisions for him or herself. This document gives the attorney-in-fact complete financial and disposition authority over such matters as: safety deposit boxes, real property, personal property, financial accounts, claims against the individual, legal proceedings, written instruments and tax returns.
A will is a legal document through which an individual directs the disposition of his or her possessions after his or her death. A will does not go into effect until death and may be changed or revoked at any time during life. A properly executed will can avoid the many pitfalls of probate by the clarifying who the property goes to, who will be the personal representative of the estate, and also saves the estate money by waiving bond and surety.
Sometimes, individuals have more complicated needs, and a trust should be drafted. A trust is a legal document which holds property for the benefit of others. Skeeters, Bennett, Wilson & Humphrey frequently draft living trusts, irrevocable life insurance trusts and marital/family trusts.
Contact us today to make certain your plans are in place.