Allow me to share with you the story of a man who I’ll call Mr. G.*
He wanted to get his estate plan together but just kept putting it off. He was so busy with his life – family, work and other obligations – he simply procrastinated.
Then Mr. G became mysteriously ill. Hospitalized in an unconscious state, his family didn’t know what to do. After exhaustive searches, they could find no documents declaring his wishes.
Although Mr. G’s son said his father had asked him to be the executor of his estate, there was no record of that. Besides, said family members, that’s different from making medical decisions for an incapacitated person.
While everyone thinks of a Last Will and Testament when an estate plan is mentioned, a complete plan includes several additional vital documents. One of them is a Health Care and Mental Health Care Power of Attorney, naming the person you entrust to make medical decisions according to your wishes, which are spelled out in your Living Will.
Fortunately, Mr. G awoke amidst the turmoil and saw his family arguing. As soon as he got home, he made an appointment to complete his estate plan, including his Last Will and Testament, Financial Power of Attorney, Health Care and Mental Health Care Power of Attorney, Living Will, HIPAA Authorization, and Final Disposition Instructions.
For preparation of these and other estate documents, contact Janie Stover, AZCLDP at Southern Arizona Wills and Trusts, 520-240-6723.
*Mr. G is not a real person, though such cases occur frequently.