While it may not be pleasant to think about the fact that we’ll pass away one day and need to have our affairs in order, it is important to make sure your loved ones know about your final wishes. If you’re a New York resident, here are some things you need to know about the items on your estate planning and administration checklist.
Your healthcare proxy, which is also called a medical power of attorney, is a legally binding document that authorizes one or more individuals to make decisions for your health or medical treatments on your behalf. You should have this in place as part of your estate plan if you become seriously ill or incapacitated.
Most people appoint their significant other or spouse as their healthcare agent and appoint a child or trusted family member to serve as an alternate agent in case the first proxy becomes ill or passes away.
A living will
Your living will is essential to your estate planning and administration. This legal document gives you the ability to specify how you want to be cared for medically. You can decide whether you want to be put on a ventilator or undergo additional surgical procedures that could be life-saving.
Your interment agreement refers to the arrangements you make with the cemetery or funeral home you want your family to patronize when you pass away. Be sure to inform your loved ones once you make these arrangements. This can eliminate conflicts between your relatives as they prepare to pay their final respects.
Be sure to make several copies of all the important documents concerning your estate and give some of these copies to trusted family members for safekeeping.