TIPS FOR ESTATE PLANNING
Estate planning is NOT just for the affluent, but for everyone. Estate planning is your way of protecting yourself and your family with respect to your health decisions and your family’s financial security. Estate planning involves making important decisions about your assets, healthcare wishes, and the distribution of your estate after your passing. As a trusted home care agency, we understand the value of comprehensive planning, which includes safeguarding your legacy and ensuring your desires are fulfilled.
A GOOD ESTATE PLAN IS COMPRISED OF THESE 5 KEY ELEMENTS:
1. DRAW UP A WILL
A will is a legally binding document that directs who will receive your property and assets after your death. It names an executor – the person who you want to carry out those directions. A will also names a guardian or guardians who will care for your minor children or other dependents, should you die or become incapacitated.
Put yourself in the driver’s seat of your estate and how it will be divided. Without a will, your estate will be settled in probate court, meaning someone else decides where you money goes. It is a slow and expensive process and could take up to two years. While your heirs will still need to go through the court system to have your will reviewed and confirmed as valid, it will be a far simpler process.
2. BENEFICIARY DESIGNATION
One way to avoid probate court is to have beneficiaries designated for your assets. Some accounts, such as retirement funds and life insurance policies, let owners name beneficiaries who will receive the asset.
3. POWER OF ATTORNEY
A Power of Attorney is the person you designate to step in and manage your affairs, should you become ill or incapacitated. The person you designate, known as your agent, has the power to make financial decisions on your behalf. A Power of Attorney can be general, giving the designated agent the authority to conduct any type of business, or specific, limiting your agents power to transactions expressly outlined.
4. SET UP A TRUST
A trust is a legal arrangement through which a trustee holds legal title to property on behalf of a beneficiary or beneficiaries. The person setting up a trust can dictate how and when beneficiaries receive the assets in the trust. A revocable trust assists you if you lose capacity during your lifetime and distributes without the complexities of probate. An irrevocable trust can assist with long term care (nursing home care) and estate taxation.
5. HEALTH CARE PROXY- MEDICAL DIRECTIVE
A health care directive is similar to a power of attorney in that it designates someone you choose to make healthcare decisions for you if you are unable to do so yourself. There are two main documents in a health care directive:
A living will, which is a written statement that provides instructions for your health care, should you become terminally ill.
A health care proxy, which designates a person who will make medical decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated.
Home care agencies play a vital role in providing personalized care and support to individuals in the comfort of their own homes. By including provisions in your estate plan for funding home care services, you can ensure that your healthcare needs will be met, granting you independence and quality of life in your golden years.
If you or a loved one is in Myrtle Beach, Grand Dunes, Pawleys Island, Litchfield, or within the Horry County area and you have any questions or concerns about their health, please give Amethyst Home Care a call at (843) 984-0739, toll-free(800) 476-7059 or email us at email@example.com to meet with one of our RNs for a more comprehensive personalized home assessment.