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Did you or your loved one recently turn 18?
Although the next day may seem like just another day, you can empower yourself by addressing some of those “what ifs” in life with estate planning for 18-year-olds.
Did you know that you can plan for your future and protect yourself with estate planning? It’s not just for older people; it’s essential.
This blog will address four essential estate planning documents for 18-Year-Olds: HIPAA, healthcare directives and proxy, and power of attorney.
While these documents are essential for everyone, there are other estate planning or protective money moves that you need to make as well; your financial advisor can help guide you with this.
HIPAA stands for the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. It’s a law that protects your private health information. When you turn 18, your medical details become private; even your parents can’t access them without your permission.
But what if something happens, and you can’t decide about your health? That’s where HIPAA Authorization comes in handy. You can choose someone you trust, like a parent or a close friend, to access your medical information and make informed decisions on your behalf if you cannot do it yourself.
A Healthcare Directive is like a letter that talks about your health wishes. You can think of it as a “just in case” plan. If you ever get very sick or hurt and can’t speak for yourself, this document helps guide doctors and your loved ones on what medical treatments you want or don’t want. It ensures your voice is heard, even when you can’t speak. You can also choose a Healthcare Proxy – someone you trust to make those decisions for you if you can’t.
The Power of Attorney (POA) is another vital document for estate planning. It’s like appointing a superhero for your finances. If, for some reason, you can’t handle your money matters, like paying bills or managing bank accounts, a Power of Attorney allows someone you trust to step in and help you out. They can act on your behalf, but don’t worry; they must follow your wishes and act in your best interest.
You can start your estate planning now. It’s easier than you think! Talk to your parents or a trusted adult about your wishes. They can help you find an attorney who specializes in estate planning. The attorney will guide you through the process and help you create these important documents. Remember, estate planning is about choosing your future and ensuring your loved ones know what you want if the unexpected happens.
As you grow older, things may change in your life. Maybe you’ll move to a different state, have new medical preferences, or trust someone else to decide for you. That’s why it’s essential to review your estate planning documents every few years or when you experience major life changes and update them as needed. Life is full of surprises, and keeping your plan up-to-date ensures it always reflects your wishes.
Congratulations! You are on your way to securing these essential estate planning documents for 18-year-olds: HIPAA, Healthcare Directive & Proxy, and Power of Attorney.
Remember, estate planning isn’t just for grown-ups; it’s essential for young adults too. By preparing these documents now, you’re protecting yourself and your future. So, talk to your parents or a trusted adult, find an estate planning attorney and financial advisor, and plan for your amazing journey ahead. With these documents in place, you can face whatever life throws at you with confidence and peace of mind.