Easter is a good time to talk about Estate Planning
Easter is this Sunday, April 16, 2017. Easter is a special sacred religious holiday celebrating the Resurrection of Jesus Christ. This is a time where many families attend church together and have family gatherings. For the children, there are plenty of egg hunts happening this weekend. Certainly estate planning is not the first thing that comes to mind when thinking about Easter. However, having final affairs in order before it is needed can be the most loving thing a person can do for their family
Deciding how to handle assets and healthcare issues for individuals facing death or disability is a sensitive subject. A family often struggles with intense grief at the loss of a loved one, thus it is important that people plan ahead and consider the protection of their assets and personal healthcare choices if the need should arise. Retaining an experienced estate planning lawyer can put a Delaware resident’s mind at rest, knowing that a healthcare directive, a will, and other estate matters are not left for family members to navigate through in their time of grief.
Understanding Estate Planning in Delaware
A sizable majority of individuals in the United States do not have a will when they die. In Delaware, basic estate planning often consists of drafting a last will and testament, the designation of a power of attorney, and the creation of an Advance Healthcare Directive. A professional estate planning lawyer in Delaware can help an individual with these important issues and also assist the person with the following:
- Controlling the individual’s assets during his or her lifetime
- Learning how to avoid probate matters
- Becoming knowledgeable about ways to protect assets from creditors for a spouse or children receiving those assets after the individual’s death
- Receiving sound advice on other important legal matters
- Drafting a Will
It is important to take the time and consideration needed to create a will so that an individual’s family is explicitly aware of the wishes of the deceased. This document can clear up any misunderstandings that a family may have regarding the final wishes of the person, as well as determine the distribution of specific assets. Consulting with an estate planning lawyer is advised for anyone in Delaware interested in preparing a will because a document prepared incorrectly can be determined to be invalid. Typically, the will requires a minimum of two people to witness and sign it, and valid witnesses should be individuals who do not have a direct interest in the document.
Considering an Advance Healthcare Directive
An Advance Healthcare Directive, commonly known as a living will, formally establishes a person who you authorize to make healthcare decisions for you in the event that you are unable to make these decisions yourself. This designated individual can assist others in knowing your wishes regarding prolonging your life in case of a terminal condition which may have no hope of recovery, the use of breathing machines, and other important matters regarding your healthcare. An estate planning lawyer in Delaware can explain to you the importance of having an Advance Healthcare Directive established long before poor health may make the directive an important necessity.
Using the services of a knowledgeable estate planning lawyer in Delaware helps an individual make important decisions about end-of-life healthcare and asset protection. The attorney can use his or her experience with the laws of Delaware to ensure that your legal documents well reflect your specific directives. Preparing these documents early is crucial because it makes your intentions known, allowing your family to feel certain that they are carrying out your wishes properly and in a respectful manner.
Whether you need a basic will and power of attorney in Delaware or you have more complex needs such as the creation of a trust, please do not hesitate to contact us. To schedule a consultation in our Sussex County, Delaware office, please call 302-855-9300, our Kent and New Castle County, Delaware offices at 302-697-2499 or fill out the contact form on this site.