There are many important decisions that parents must make. Among the most important, but often forgotten, involves making a will.
There are many different types of wills and trusts that a parent should consider when striving to make end of life decisions for themselves that help remove stress and heart ache for their loved ones.
When these decisions are made in advance, pain and suffering can be better alleviated.
A living will is created to help loved ones make decisions for your care when you are incapable of making them for yourself. Scenarios in which you would be unable to make important legal decisions involve terminal illness, serious injury/coma, and dementia.
The living will or advance directive spells out what your preferences are in these situations, and how you wish for your medical care to proceed. You can also name an individual to make these medical decisions on your behalf. This is called a power of attorney.
A regular will, better known as a simple will, is a will in which you specify how your assets will be divided, and who you would like to care for your minor children.
Some assets to consider when making a simple will include your home, cars, bank accounts, digital assets, and any other tangible object. Another aspect to consider when making a simple will might include designating who will care for your pets.
A will is highly important because we are unable to predict the future. There are many things that can happen that can endanger our lives, or even kill us. Often, these scenarios are through no fault of our own.
This is why making a will is vital for all adults, especially if they have children.
Making these decisions now can help prevent unwanted treatment of your children. A will helps to ensure that your children will be cared for by family members or friends, instead of leaving them in the care of the state.
Additionally, it is important to note that if injury has occurred due to the fault and negligence of others, proper steps should be taken to better care for your loved ones who are left dealing with the repercussions of such negligence.
If you or your family find yourself in a situation where a loved one was injured or killed prematurely, giving a trusted person the power of attorney to act on your behalf allows them to hire a personal injury lawyer. This attorney will fight for reparations to be paid to you or your beneficiaries, allowing them to be properly compensated.
Estate planning is a collection of documents that includes all of the previously discussed topics and then some. It essentially compiles all of your end of life information and wishes in one place, designating how you would like things to be. If you have properly formatted your estate and legal documents, you can limit the taxes that your loved ones will have to pay due to your death, and better protect your beneficiaries.
As an adult, but especially as a parent, it is up to you to best protect, provide, and prepare your children and loved ones for any eventuality. By properly planning for your death, through the use of estate planning and will creation, you are performing one last act of love for your family members.
By properly preparing for end of life situations, you are helping to avoid further heartache, potential disagreements, and better protections for your loved ones.