You need an agent. No matter the nature of your unique talent and whether or not you have a particularly telegenic personality, your agent will be there to protect your interests and desires even after you’ve passed.
What, did you think I meant the Hollywood type? Estate planning has its own agents—individuals designated by you to ensure that your estate is handled according to your wishes after you’ve gone or otherwise incapable of communicating them yourself.
The Four Agents Everybody needs:
This is the person responsible for the distribution of your assets and the fulfillment of your wishes as accords to your will. The choice of this person is entirely up to you—they can be a trusted member of the family, a close personal friend, or even a professional who has dedicated his or her career to ensuring that the will of the deceased be met.
Out of all that is yours, your children are the most precious. In the unfortunate event that both you and your spouse pass before your children step out into the world, having not designated a guardian leaves their fate up to the ruling of a judge who does not know them and is entirely unfamiliar with your particular familial relations.
Naming someone trusted to watch over them—providing both the upbringing you think is best and a secure handling of their finances. Many people do not realize that these roles can be divided and assigned separately, to multiple guardians. You want to know with absolute certainty that your children will have the opportunity to reach their full potential, so choose carefully (and, if possible, choose a backup in case your 1st choice is unable to serve).
Another essential component is providing for their care in the interim before they end up in the hands of their permanent guardian. If the guardian is distant or your legal documents cannot be found, the court may appoint a stranger to see to their care. That’s why I provide a Kids Protection Plan®, the most comprehensive way to protect your children’s future.
Attorney in Fact
No, this isn’t the same as your Attorney at Law. An attorney in fact is the person you designate in a Durable Power of Attorney to manage your financial affairs on your behalf. If you are still living but unable to make the decisions necessary to manage your financial affairs, it is important for you to have already designated a person to fill this role.
A Healthcare proxy is the person designated by you to manage your healthcare decisions in the event that you are unable to do so yourself. This is a key component of a solid Healthcare Directive, as you will want to be certain that your wishes are carried out in full. Particularly if your family members do not share your views on medical treatment, a person who can stand up to them on your behalf is essential.
How we can help
One of the main goals of our law practice is to help families like yours plan for the protection of yourself and your family through thoughtful estate planning. Call our office today at 612-206-3701 or reach out via our online contact form. to schedule a time for us to sit down and talk about a Family Wealth Planning Session, where we can identify the best strategies for you and your family.
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