Power of Attorney and Other Important End of Life Legal Documents
There are a number of legal documents that are important for end of life planning. Having these important documents in order before the time comes will ensure that your wishes are followed at the end of your life, situations where you could potentially be facing the end of your life, and even after you are gone.
A Valid Will.
Your valid will is the most important piece of legal documentation you can leave behind when you go. A will can be used to direct how you want your property and assets to be distributed to your family members, close friends and charity. You can designate a person to act as your personal representative and he or she will be tasked with distributing your assets according to your wishes. Without a valid will, your assets will be divvied up based on Texas intestacy law.
Less well-known than a will, a durable power of attorney enables you to select someone to manage your finances if you become unable to do so for yourself. This person will be given the authority to make financial decisions on your behalf. Without this document in place, a court may have to assign a guardianship for you and may entrust your finances to someone you did not, or would not have chosen for yourself.
Power of Attorney Medical-Related End of Life Legal Documents
When it comes to making health-related and end of life care decisions, you will want to document your wishes precisely so that they will be followed in the event that you are unable to make those decisions for yourself.
- Medical Power of Attorney. A medical power of attorney allows you to vest any decisions related to your medical care to someone you trust, in the event that you become incapacitated or unconscious. This can be a very important document to have, even as a young person, since unexpected injuries can render you unable to make your own medical decisions.
- Medical Directives. Medical directives are also sometimes referred to as Do Not Resuscitate orders or physician directives. They are specific legal documents that instruct doctors, physicians and other medical personnel to not use artificial methods and means to prolong your life. These documents can instruct not to resuscitate you, use artificial respiration on you or to not force feed or hydrate you in the event that you stop eating.
- HIPAA Authorization.This legal document allows you to indicate individuals with whom you would like your medical information shared. This authorization allows your designated individual to discuss your medical records with your health insurer, doctors and treatment centers.
An Estate Planning Attorney Can Help Prepare End of Life Documents
Having your affairs in order before you go can give you the peace of mind in knowing that you have taken care of everything and will not be leaving your loved ones in a legal lurch after you pass on. The estate planning professionals at Giles & Giles have years of experience preparing wills, powers of attorney and other end of life legal documents and other estate planning matters. We can help you organize your estate. Please feel free to contact us today.
It is never too early or too late in life to contact our firm regarding important end of life documents.