During the estate planning process, estate planners prepare for what will be done with their belongings, property and assets and how their loved ones will be cared for after they are gone. It only makes sense that, as part of the estate planning process, they should also prepare for what will happen if they become incapacitated.
Incapacity can happen to anyone which is why it is important to plan ahead in case it happens. Several documents that can be included in an estate plan can help.
A living will or advance healthcare directive
A living will or advance healthcare directive sets out the types of medical care and treatment the estate planner wants to receive. It can also include the types of medical care and treatment the estate planner does not wish to receive. It can address end of life medical care and treatment concerns as well.
A power of attorney for healthcare decisions
A power of attorney for healthcare can designate a trusted individual who will make healthcare decisions for the estate planner if they become incapacitated.
A power of attorney for financial affairs
A power of attorney for financials affairs can designate a trusted individual who will manage the estate planner’s financial affairs for them if the estate planner becomes incapacitated.
There are two primary areas that estate planners want to ensure are covered if they become incapacitated including who will take care of their financial affairs and who will guide their medical care and treatment, and how will it be guided, if they are unable to do so. Including a plan for incapacity as part of an estate plan can help with both.