Oftentimes, when Florida residents are thinking about how to craft their estate plans, they are thinking about someone else – their family members, usually, or maybe close friends or even a charity. Why? Well, because most people think of estate plans as a plan to distribute their assets after their death, which is definitely part of the big picture. However, there are other documents that will likely be included in a comprehensive estate plan. So, what documents will you include in your estate plan?
Yes, you will start at the first step – thinking about your will, or possibly a trust. These documents can describe exactly how you would like your debts to be settled and your remaining assets to be distributed. However, some other common documents that are drafted as part of the estate planning process are: living wills, a durable power of attorney and a designation of a health care surrogate.
A living will allows you to describe which end-of-life or life-saving medical procedures or care steps – if any – you would like to have implemented if the appropriate scenario arises. A durable power of attorney document allows you to appoint someone to make important financial decisions on your behalf – usually a trusted family member or close friend, or maybe even an actual attorney. The appointment of a health care surrogate allows someone to make health care decisions on your behalf, if you are incapacitated and unable to do so.
Thinking about your estate in financial terms is a good first step for the planning process. But, there are other considerations as well. For more information about how our law firm attempts to help Florida residents who are ready to craft their comprehensive estate plan, please visit our website.