Four Legal Documents Everyone Needs 

1.  A DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR HEALTHCARE AND HIPAA RELEASE

  • Gives your agent authority to make healthcare decisions when you cannot make decisions for yourself

  • Names the person that you desire to serve as your guardian, if needed

  • Allows  you to decide whether life support will be continued in event death is imminent

  • Allows you to limit the type of medical care that can be performed on you, such as organ donation, organ transplant

2.  A DURABLE POWER OF ATTORNEY FOR FINANCES

  • Allows you to decide who will make financial decisions for you

  • You can limit the amount of authority to a specific time frame or specific act

  • You can have the power go into effect immediately or come into effect in the future

  • There can be problems getting financial institutions to accept them

3.   A WILL

  • Allows you to determine who will inherit your assets

  • Not effective unless assets are titled correctly

  • Requires assets to pass through probate

4.   A REVOCABLE LIVING TRUST

  • Allows you to determine who will inherit your assets

  • Not effective unless assets are titled correctly

  • Allows assets to avoid probate

  • Avoids conservatorship/guardianship on assets held in trust

  • To be effective assets must be titled in the name of the trust

Difference between a Will and a Trust

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