We are going through a very trying time as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic…exacerbated by some of the most volatile markets seen since 1987.
Many of us have dusted off work contingency plans, (working from home) and are receiving new contingency plans from our schools (colleges) or our children’s schools.
The goal of these plans is to have a procedure in place so that our professional lives and our children’s lives can continue as well as possible in these new circumstances. Chances are you have been given the name of a colleague and/or educator who has been designated as the contingency plan “go to” person for remote work/remote learning questions and obstacles.
Who is the “go-to” person for YOU and your family, in the event circumstances impact your ability to take care of your own (and/or your family’s) financial, legal and health concerns? What plan do you have in place so your world can continue as well as possible in new circumstances? Is your plan in place so the person/people of your choosing can step in and keep it rolling?
The basics for pretty much everyone are:
1. Power of Attorney (go-to for legal/financial support)
2. Health Care Proxy (go-to for health care decisions)
3. Living Will/Advanced Directive (what, if any, extraordinary measures do you wish)
If you are over 18 years old, you are considered an adult and banks, doctors, investment advisors, etc. cannot divulge your information or take instruction from anyone other than you, unless you have the above in place (Power of Attorney/Health Care Proxy). The Will sets out the instructions for where and to whom you want to give your stuff, and whom do you wish to handle that process.
If you have young children (under 18) you will also need to name guardians (permanent and perhaps temporary.
As you acquire more things and assets, a Revocable Trust is an important vehicle to keep your assets and wishes, liquid and private.
Please see this article from Forbes about the importance of estate planning throughout our lives. This is not a ‘one and done’ process. You are not planning for forever.
Just like an education contingency plan for a 7-year-old is different from a 15-year-old and a contingency plan for a 5-person company is different from a plan for a 50 or 500-person company, so our plans evolve as our circumstances change.
We attorneys in this field are still diligently working on behalf of our clients…we can conduct meetings virtually via video or telephone call and can share information readily via portals. Let’s use this time to get our own Personal or Family Contingency Plan in place. Please reach out to K. Reilly Law LLC at (857) 277-0918 or KerryReilly@KReillyLawLLC.com to get started.