Graduating from high school and preparing for college is a very exciting time in a young adult’s life. With all the preparation that is necessary, most young adults overlook one of the most important things they should do upon turning age 18: estate planning. While most 18-year-olds do not have large estates or families to plan for, there are three estate planning documents that every 18-year-old needs.
1. Springing Power of Attorney
The first necessary part of a young adult’s plan is a springing power of attorney. Through a springing power of attorney, a person designates someone to make business and financial decisions if he or she becomes incapacitated. Importantly, the power of attorney does not “spring” into action until the person who drafted it becomes incapacitated.
2. Health Care Power of Attorney
Also necessary to a young person’s estate plan is a Health Care Power of Attorney. This document names a person to make medical decisions if the individual is unable to make these decisions. It will be the agent’s responsibility to work with doctors and various other health care providers to try to provide the incapacitated with the care that he or she would have wanted
3. HIPPA Release
A third vital part of your adult child’s estate plan should be a Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (“HIPPA”) release. By signing a HIPPA release, a patient agrees that, in the event medical care is needed, medical personal may release information about his or her location and condition to specified individuals. Without such a release, parents may face obstacles to even determine whether their child has been admitted to the hospital.