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Have you prepared for the future?
When was the last time you reviewed your estate and planned ahead? In addition to drafting a Will, there are other important advanced directive documents that you should have as well. They are a Health Care Proxy, Living Will and a Durable Power of Attorney. For more information, read on about Last Will and Testament, Health Care Proxy, Living Will and a Durable Power of Attorney.
Last Will and Testament
In New York State, if you die with a Will, then your estate and belongings will be distributed according to New York State law. This may not reflect your wishes. Furthermore, without a Will, the process of distributing your estate can be expensive and time-consuming.
With a Will, you get to decide how your estate is distributed, not New York State. You may have special items that you want to bequeathed to a special relative or you want to make sure that you choose the right Executor.
If you have children, under the age of 18, a Will allows you to determine who will care for them in the event you predecease them before they reach adulthood. All of that can be taken care of in a Will.
A Last Will and Testament is one of the most important documents that you can have. With a Will you can:
- Distribute your real and personal property according to your wishes and desires. The range of possibilities is almost endless. You can designate that a portion of your estate goes to one person, while a different portion goes to a different person. You can state that a special collection goes to a loved one that you know will enjoy it. Many people will designate that a collectible car goes to a certain individual.
- Choose Your Executor. You get to choose who will be the Executor of your Estate. The Executor does not have to be the person who receives any part of your Estate.
- Give some of your Estate to charity. You may want to give part of your Estate to charity. A Will can make sure that you can donate part of your Estate to the charity of your choosing.
- Care of Minor Children. If you have a child under the age of 18 years of age, you should have a Will and in your Will name a Guardian for your child or children. The Guardian does not have to be named as a beneficiary.
- Trusts. There is the ability to set up a Trust in a Will. Typically, these are Trusts set up for minor children.
A Healthcare Proxy allows you to give authority to another person to act on you behalf in all matters related to your health care. This person is called your agent.
If you are injured, temporarily incapacitated or unable to make a competent medical decision, your agent can make your health care decisions for you.
A Living Will is similar to a Health Care Proxy in that allows you to appoint another person to act on your behalf. However, a Living Will involves end-of-life decisions. With a Living Will you can determine if you want or don’t want certain life-sustaining measures, such as mechanical breathing, tube feeding or resuscitation.
Power of Attorney
A Durable Power of Attorney is a very powerful document that everyone should have. In your Power of Attorney you select another person to act on your behalf, this person is called your agent or attorney-in-fact. The Power of Attorney allows your agent the ability to handle your finances in the event of a catastrophic illness or in other situations where you are unable to do so (for example, if you are traveling in a foreign country and need to transact financial business in the United States).
The Badanes Law Office can help you in preparing your Will, Health Care Proxy, Living Will and Durable Power of Attorney. I will review all your options and answer all your questions.
When you need an experienced Attorney who will draft your Will, Health Care Proxy, Living Will and Durable Power of Attorney, please contact David Badanes. I service clients in Northport, East Northport, Huntington, Centerport, Greenlawn, Commack, Dix Hills, Elwood, Fort Salonga, Kings Park, Melville, South Huntington, Huntington Station, Nesconset, Smithtown, East Meadow, Levittown, Massapequa, Plainview, Syosset, Babylon, Islip, Centereach, Cold Spring Harbor, Riverhead, Stony Brook, Selden, Southold, Cutchogue, Suffolk County, Nassau County, or anywhere in Long Island from Montauk to Great Neck and all the towns in-between, contact the Badanes Law Office.