What Does Estate Planning Mean for Women? Part 3

This is Part 3 of a 3 part series that focuses on women and Estate Planning as we celebrate Mother’s Day 2014. Part 3 sheds some light on documents that can be used in the event of illness or mental incapacity.

As mentioned in Part 1 of this series, women are usually the caregivers for ailing spouses, children and aging parents. It is important that women have in place the following documents in case they need care and are unable to tend to their affairs:

  • A Durable Financial Power of Attorney allows an individual to name an agent to handle business matters on their behalf. This document is vital when dealing with financial institutions, real estate transactions, government agencies and other organizations.
  • An Advanced Directive allows an individual to name an agent to handle healthcare matters on their behalf. This document is helpful when provided to Medical facilities, physicians and other medical professionals.
  • The Advanced Directive (Living Will) addresses what your preferences for treatment are if you have a terminal illness or suffer an ailment that leaves you unable to make decisions. Do you wish to receive life-sustaining treatments to keep you alive? If yes, under what circumstances?

Questions about medical treatment can be uncomfortable and many people would rather not deal with them. The reality is that at some point your circumstances could change and these documents would be a roadmap for loved ones and medical personnel to give you the care and treatment that you desire.

This is the final part of the series for Women and Mother’s Day 2014. Look for a series in June to highlight topics and issues about men for Father’s Day 2014.

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