Comprehensive Estate Planning And Probate Advocacy

Estate planning tools to prepare for possible future incapacity

On Behalf of | May 24, 2024 | Estate Planning

As life unfolds, we often focus on our achievements, milestones and dreams. Yet, it is equally essential to prepare for the unexpected – times when we may be unable to make decisions due to illness, injury or aging. 

Incapacity planning empowers individuals to safeguard their healthcare autonomy and financial interests when they cannot speak for themselves.

Safeguard your healthcare preferences

A top concern for older Pennsylvanians is what could happen to them if they become unable to express their medical care wishes. Two critical documents – the living will and the healthcare power of attorney – play pivotal roles in safeguarding your healthcare autonomy. 

These advance directives allow you to express your preferences for:

  • Life support measures like artificial respiration or dialysis 
  • Pain management and palliative care
  • The use of medical interventions at the end of your life
  • End-of-life spiritual or religious concerns

These planning tools allow you to always have a say in your medical care, regardless of your condition.

Protect your assets and financial matters

Now that you know how to address medical issues for possible incapacitation, it is time to protect your assets for future generations. Along with a well-drafted will, these two financial documents ensure you are off to a good start.

  • Financial power of attorney. This estate planning document grants a trusted agent the authority to control financial matters on your behalf, such as paying bills, managing investments, filing tax returns and more.
  • Revocable living trust. With this tool, you maintain full control and management of your assets while alive and healthy. Upon incapacitation, it allows your designated agent to take over asset control, ensuring no court intervention or gaps in financial protection.

These are just two ways to address potential future incapacity. Seek legal guidance to learn more.