Thursday, October 18, 2012

Why Having a Power of Attorney can be CRUCIAL for You

TRUE OR FALSE

If you have a valid current will and have all your important papers organized then you have adequately protected your family and business in the case of your disability or death.

ANSWER:  FALSE

Having a valid, current will is certainly an important step in preparing for the future.  So is organizing important papers and reviewing beneficiary designations on life insurance policies and retirement accounts.   However, a will is only helpful if you die.   What would happen if you were alive, but unable to function?  

In the event of illness or accident, you could be temporarily disabled or permanently disabled.  So your complete and total planning should take into account all three periods of time:

1.       Here you are, alive, well and functioning.

2.       You are alive, but unable to make business, medical or personal decisions

3.       You are deceased

 

It is very common for people to provide for #1 and # 3, above, but make no plans for #2.

In order to close that gap, you can sign specific powers of attorney, designating an “agent” to handle things for you while you cannot.  There are two important Powers of Attorney that you should know about; one is for health care and one if for day-to-day operations (of “personal business”, “company business” or both). If you own your own company it is especially important to make sure that you have a document in place.  

These two Powers of Attorney can be very customized for your particular situation. by a wills attorney. Other, more specific documents can be drafted to deal with particular, individualized situations when necessary.

A power of attorney allows someone of your choosing to “stand in your place” and act for you when you are unable to do so for yourself.

Kalish Law Office: The Woodlands Texas 

Wills, Powers of Attorney, Estate Planning Attorneys

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