De Fonte Law PC loves working with young clients to create personalized health care directives, durable powers of attorney, and simple wills for young adults. We will talk to them about the importance of insurance (umbrella, auto, and renters) and about financial literacy. Our heart-forward holistic approach means that we go beyond the four corners of the document, giving your young adult a window into the concepts that concern you to set them up for future success.
Basic and Crucial Estate Planning Documents
Before your child is college-bound, you should consider completing the following basic estate planning documents:
Healthcare Directive with HIPPA Authorization – While most parents assume when their child is away at college and is in need of medical attention (including mental healthcare) they will be immediately contacted and will have full rights to make decisions, this is simply not the case. Once your child becomes 18 years of age, he or she is protected by HIPPA laws. This means health care professionals cannot provide medical information without your child’s signed consent, even though your child may still be on your health insurance. If there is no signed HIPPA release at the time, then you may need a court order to be able to access your child’s health information. A Healthcare Directive appoints you as an agent that is able to make
medical decisions on behalf of your child in the event he or she becomes ill or incapacitated.
Of note, each university or college may have its own form of medical release documents as well. While this is no substitute for a Healthcare Directive, signing the school’s documents in advance will likely speed up the process of assisting your child in his or her healthcare needs.
Power of Attorney – similar to a healthcare directive, a durable power of attorney appoints an agent to make financial decisions on behalf of the individual. This can allow you to have access to your child’s finances, including bank accounts, scholarship funds, rental agreements, and insurance matters, to name a few.
Prepare Ahead of Time
Many parents are actively involved in their college-aged children’s care and responsibility. Nonetheless, turning 18 changes the legal landscape when it comes to your rights to address your child’s needs. Preparing a legal plan for your college student ahead of time will greatly reduce any legal hurdles you may face as a family while he or she is attending college. Before sending your child off to college, give us a call so we can help you craft a plan that protects your most valuable asset — your children. Contact De Fonte Law PC for how to help your college student by putting the right documents into place.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]