Estate Planning – Deciding Now So You Won’t Worry Later
The future is unpredictable. Your wishes don’t have to be. Estate Planning puts thoughts into action making the unpredictable less worrisome.
So what exactly is an estate plan? Estate planning is the choice to make decisions now to make life easier later. It’s putting those decisions in writing to eliminate the guesswork for those you love.
What estate planning documents do I need?
A comprehensive estate plan has several documents. Here is a quick overview.
Last Will and Testament
Most people think of a Will when they think about estate planning. A Last Will and Testament (LWT) outlines your desires with regard to your assets (your tangible things) and the care and provision for your heirs…after you are gone. This one document is a declaration of love to those left behind because you have communicated your wishes, on their behalf, saving them a world of emotional turmoil trying to guess what you would have wanted. A Will is a must, but it is only one facet of a good estate plan.
Power of Attorney
A Power or Attorney (POA) is a legal document that allows you to appoint someone to make decisions on your behalf, if that should become necessary. This loving decisions allows a spouse or designated loved one to continue paying bills, making decisions and handling the financial decisions while you are unable to do so.
Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney
Having a Living Will and Health Care Power of Attorney specifically identifies your wishes with regard to medical care and treatment. Taking time to document the kinds of treatments you are willing to pursue and the medical measures you want to be taken, if necessary, gives loved ones the gift of peace of mind. Having the power to choose who will make these important life decisions gives you peace of mind.
If you have minor children or grandchildren, a special needs family member, or an elderly dependent in your care, part of your estate plan may involve a Trust. Our Attorneys understand that estate planning is a very personal process, and we enjoy helping clients craft personalized estate plans. When you put our experience to work for you, you will discover the best solutions for protecting your legacy.
If you haven’t completed your estate plan, contact our firm to get started. We’ll walk you through each of the documents and advise you as you consider your wishes for your estate.
We are a Westmoreland county legal firm that specializes in the creation, maintenance and administration of estate plans in Western, PA. Our team has advised clients on personal legal matters for over 40 years and are ready to put our experience to work for you.