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Estate Planning Archives

What is a health care proxy and what are the benefits of it?

In New York, under the state's Health Care Proxy Law, you can appoint to have someone else make medical decisions for you if you become unable to do so yourself. There are generally two situations in which that individual may be called upon to make decisions about your medical care.

The importance of keeping your estate plan updated

While it's important for everyone to have an estate plan in place, regardless of his or her net worth, it's particularly prudent for those of means to have one. That's because the transfer of assets doesn't wait for anyone. It's required immediately upon an individual's death. An estate plan serves the role of designating to whom certain assets are distributed to once you pass away.

Making sense of the different types of power of attorneys

Having kids, building an investment or asset portfolio, living life on the edge or aging are all important reasons to begin the estate planning process. People who have a will, health care proxy and powers of attorney in place will rest easy knowing that those who love them the most will be empowered to make decisions for them should the unexpected occur and they're unable to do so themselves.

Same-sex couples and their rights in the estate planning process

While many couples rely on estate planning as a way to ensure that one spouse's assets will end up in the other's possession upon their death, same-sex couples are unfortunately not afforded those same guarantees. Despite marriage equality laws that have been implemented in recent years, the transfer of one spouse's estate to their same-sex partner requires the advance signing of directives to ensure that it proceeds smoothly.

Everybody needs an advocate when they're incapacitated

A tragic health catastrophe can happen to you at any time. If your health problem is so severe that it leaves you incapacitated, you won't be able to make decisions for yourself, and someone else will need to take care of important details pertaining to your health care. This is where the New York Health Care Proxy Law comes into action to assist you -- that is, if you took appropriate action ahead of time.

Celebrity chef's family embroiled in dispute over mother's estate

It's sad when a family descends into arguments and disagreements over a deceased loved one's estate. This is why New York residents need to take great care when writing and updating a will. A will needs to be written the right way, so it holds up to being challenged in court.

How your estate plan will help you before you die

Most Queens estate planners will delay putting their estate plans together until the last possible moment. In fact, many Queens residents never create an estate plan, and they die without the most rudimentary of wills. Part of the reason for the delay might be due to procrastination, part of it might be because no one wants to think about his or her death and part of it might be because people wrongly assume that they, themselves, will not benefit from their estate plans.

The benefits of selecting a health care agent

An important estate planning document that New York residents should have on file is known as a "health care proxy." Your health care proxy is a document that allows another individual of your choosing to make health care related decisions on your behalf in the event that you're not able to do so yourself.