It is easy for people to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of everyday life, causing them to put estate planning on the back burner. However, failure to engage in estate planning may leave one's loved ones with major challenges. An individual's property in New York may end up not being distributed in the way in which he or she would have preferred, and the lack of an estate plan can also cause conflict among surviving family members. Comprehensive estate planning includes several steps, the first of which involves the creation of wills.
Wills outline what will happen to people's assets when they die. In a will, an individual can also appoint guardians over minor children. Another important document in an estate plan is the power of attorney, which gives a chosen person the authority to complete actions on one's behalf, such as paying bills or selling assets.
In addition, health care proxies are an important part of the estate planning process. This kind of proxy is a person appointed to ensure that one's medical wishes end up being fulfilled in the event that one becomes seriously ill. It is essential to select a person who one trusts to serve as the executor of one's will, health care proxy and power of attorney.
People of all ages benefit from putting together estate plans, including wills, to protect themselves from unexpected situations, including serious illnesses or death. It is worth noting that most estate planning documents can be amended at any time. It is within a person's rights to pursue his or her best interests, as well as those of his or her beneficiaries, through carefully considered estate planning in New York.
Source: rochesterhomepage.net, "Estate Planning", Mark Gruba, April 27, 2015