|Frequently asked questions about Estate Planning|
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Frequently asked questions about Estate Planning:
A will is the legal document that outlines precisely how (and to whom) you want your assets to be distributed upon your death. It’s advisable to have a will to keep your estate from being distributed according to the laws of intestacy. Anyone over 18 years of age and of sound mind can make a will.
What changes should trigger an update of your will and overall estate plan?
We recommend that you review your legal documents and assets with an estate planning attorney at least every 5 years to keep current with the laws and your personal situation.
It means that someone called an “agent” or “attorney-in-fact” has been appointed to make legally binding decisions on behalf of another person (the “principal”). A power of attorney specifies exactly what powers the agent holds. This designation can be very helpful in avoiding probate court involvement, as well as unpleasant family disputes over control of finances and/or personal matters.
A health care representative (HCR) makes an incapacitated person’s health care-related decisions. An HCR is an advocate with the written authority to make any and all health care decisions for a person incapable of communicating them – including end-of-life decisions regarding life support – based on what is known of the person’s wishes. The HCR must act in your best interests.
In Connecticut, an “advance directive” is the legal document that: 1) expresses your health care preferences if you are unable to communicate them yourself – your living will; and 2) appoints your health care representative to ensure your wishes are carried out.
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