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While not the most enjoyable topic to discuss, having a thorough and secure Estate Plan in place before you die or become incapacitated is critical. At the bare minimum, a Kentucky Estate Plan should consist of the below documents.
Estate Planning Intake Packet
We ask clients to do they best they can in completing the Estate Planning Intake Packet. This will allow Josh to quickly assess your needs and draft the rights documents.
last will and testament
A Last Will and Testament (commonly referred to as just a "Will") states your final wishes. Typically, these wishes mainly relate to the distribution of your assets. You may also leave instructions in your Will to do such things as name an executor, designate guardians for your minor children and their property, choose how taxes and debts will be paid, and even provide for the care of pets.
Upon your death, a court reads your Will and makes sure that your final instructions are carried out. This is part of a process known as probate. While the probate process varies between states it typically lasts anywhere from several months up to a few years. If you do not have a valid Will in place your property will be distributed according to state law.
durable general power of attorney
A power of attorney gives broad legal powers to your chosen agents to act on your behalf so that they may manage and conduct your affairs as you would do if acting personally. Such powers may include handling financial and business transactions, settling claims, making gifts, operating business interests, and employing professional help.
Unlike a regular power of attorney, which ends when its purpose is fulfilled or upon your incapacity or death, a Durable General Power of Attorney survives your incapacity (though it does end upon your death). This attribute makes it an effective estate planning tool. In the event that you become incapacitated your agent can maintain your financial affairs until you recover, while also avoiding court involvement. The benefit is that financial loss is reduced and your family's needs will continue to be met.
Living Will and Designation of Health Care Surrogate
If you become mentally or physically incapacitated to the point that you are no longer able to give your informed consent, a Living Will and Designation of Health Care Surrogate provides instructions regarding your medical treatment and appoints someone to oversee your care. Without this instrument, these important decisions can be left up to strangers, such as doctors, estranged family members, or even judges. This document may also include your desires pertaining to the use of life support and your wishes regarding organ donation.
HIPPA release Form
A HIPPA Release Form allows a person(s) of your choosing to obtain protected medical information about you from your doctors, hospitals, and insurance companies. Such information usually includes your medical records and medical history, among other things. This document is critical as it allows your selected Health Care Surrogate to carry out your wishes per your Living Will.
to create an estate plan or probate an estate, Contact Josh.
Call (859) 905-0714 or complete the below form for a FREE consultation.