Estate Planning For When Your Kids Leave The Nest (Or When You Leave The Nest)

Estate Planning For Your College-Aged Child Leaving The Nest

It’s mid-summer and Massachusetts has been graced with a great stretch of beautiful weather. As the summer winds down, parents will begin to start sending their children off to college. Believe it or not, once your child reaches the age of 18, they are an adult and you no longer have access to their health or personal information. Without exception, most parents think that they can still make decisions for their kids, because they are paying the tuition, but that it not the case.

An 18-year-old is an adult and we recommend that each “child” complete some basic documents that designate agents for them if they need help. Eckert Byrne LLC has created the Sapling Plan for exactly these situations.

Important Estate Planning Documents For Young Adults

Our Sapling Plan provides documents to support parents or loved ones in accessing their child’s healthcare information or making healthcare decisions in the event of an emergency. This plan also provides students and young adults the ability to inform their loved ones of their wishes regarding medical treatment in the event of disability. Additionally, these documents allow parents or loved ones to access or manage their child’s finances and digital assets during a time of incapacity or disability.

Health Care Proxy

The health care proxy gives your designated agent the power to make healthcare decisions on your behalf. Without this document, the only person who can make decisions regarding your healthcare would be a court-appointed guardian.

Living Will

A living will makes your wishes regarding life-prolonging medical treatment known to your health care proxy. The document provides peace of mind to you and your health care proxy to assist them in making end of life decisions they know you would like to be made.

HIPPA Authorizations

HIPPA authorizations allow named individuals to access your medical information and understand your medical status. Without this document, your loved ones would not have access to any information regarding your health in the event of an emergency or your incapacity. (This is also incorporated into the health care proxy).

Power of Attorney

Power of attorney allows named individuals to have the full power and rights to handle any financial or legal-related actions or decisions on your behalf.  Without this document, your loved ones would not have access to any of your financial or legal information or resources upon your disability or incapacity. They would need to be court appointed as your conservator.

Letter of Instructions to My Health Care Agents

The letter provides further information to your health care proxy about your wishes regarding medical treatment. This document provides peace of mind to your health care proxy and assists them in making the healthcare decisions they know you would like to be made.

Leaving The Nest & Traveling Without Your Kids This Summer?

Estate Planning Before A Vacation

The Ultimate Babysitter (Trustee) Letter

Do you remember the first time you left your baby with a baby sitter? Oh, the angst! Do you remember the preparation? The lists you left and all the details you provided the babysitter just in case something happened to you? You gave so much thought to this one moment, but the reality is that the same amount of detail is likely unavailable for your children if something happened to you and you never came back. It is a scary thought that may send a shiver down your spine. In case you want to create such a “letter” Eckert Byrne LLC has created a free fillable copy of the “Instructions to Trustees and Guardians of Minor Children.” It’s a template our attorneys came up with and have given clients over the years.

No, it’s not a pleasant thing to think about, but do it, file it, and move on to enjoying the rest of the summer knowing that you have fulfilled your parental duty!

Eckert Byrne LLC Is Here To Help

Interested in starting to put together your child’s life and legacy plan? Have questions regarding the Letter of Instructions to Trustees and Guardians of Minor Children? Eckert Byrne LLC is available to help. Simply call (855) 743-3136 or fill out the contact form and we will be in touch shortly. It’s better to have peace of mind now, than add additional stress in the wake of an unforeseen event.

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