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I’m just a college student – do I really need an estate plan?

On Behalf of | Sep 10, 2021 | Estate Planning |

As young adults in Florida move into their dorms and apartments to begin the new college year, their attention may be focused on their studies, meeting new people and simply enjoying the college experience.

One thing that may not be anywhere on their radar is estate planning. After all, they are young, and it is likely that they will live for decades to come. However, estate planning benefits adults of any age including young adults. What benefits does estate planning offer college students?

Preparing for incapacitation

We all like to think we will be of sound mind until our death, but this is often not the case. Even a young adult can be involved in a horrific car accident that causes a coma or a disease that requires constant sedation. When this happens, the young adult will be unable to make healthcare or financial decisions on their own. For this reason, it is important that a young adult have a power of attorney and a living will.

What is a power of attorney?

There are two types of power of attorney. One is a healthcare power of attorney. A person designated as healthcare power of attorney has the right to make healthcare decisions on behalf of you should you become incapacitated and unable to make these decisions for yourself. You can designate a parent, a sibling or another loved one who understands your wishes to fulfill this role.

The other type of power of attorney is a financial power of attorney. A person designated as financial power of attorney has the right to manage your financial affairs should you become incapacitated and are unable to handle these matters yourself. Some people choose a loved one to fulfill this role, but if you have a complex estate you may choose to have a banker or legal professional fulfill this role.

What is a living will?

A living will is different than the type of will you execute regarding your belongings. In a living will, you dictate what end-of-life care you want should you be unable to communicate these wishes yourself. For example, do you want to be intubated if you stop breathing? Do you want CPR to be performed if your heart stops? Do you want to be put on a feeding tube if you cannot eat?

Many people, even young adults, have some preferences when it comes to end-of-life care. By executing a living will, doctors and your loved ones will have specific directions to follow so they can make the decisions that you would have made if you could.

College students can benefit from estate planning

College students in Fort Lauderdale may feel like estate planning is not necessary for many years. However, nothing could be further from the truth. After all, no one is guaranteed good health throughout their lifetime not even young adults. It is better to be prepared for the worst, so you can live your life worry-free knowing your preferences will be followed if the unexpected happens.



Photo of Jennifer D. Sharpe