You might be one of many people in Nevada who prefers to avoid discussions about your own mortality. You’d rather focus on living your best life rather than talk about the inevitable fact that someday your life will end. While it’s not your favorite topic, you may also understand the importance of estate planning inasmuch as it helps you retain control of your assets and also can help provide for your loved ones.
There are numerous types of estate planning documents. The great thing about planning an estate is that you can customize your plan to fit your immediate and long-term needs and goals. You might choose to incorporate several documents in your plan that are not relevant for another person who also wishes to execute an estate plan. Every person’s estate is unique.
Most common estate planning documents
It’s understandable that you’d want to help your heirs avoid legal complications when the time comes to administer your estate. One of the most basic estate planning tools is a last will and testament. This is a document that allows you to communicate your final wishes regarding assets, as well as dependents.
Another helpful document you can sign when executing your estate plan is a Durable Power of Attorney. When you designate a person or people to fulfill this role, he or she (or they) have the power to make financial decisions on your behalf. This includes buying or selling real estate, filing taxes or other financial matters.
Advance Medical Directive refers to your health
Should you become incapacitated and unable to make health-related decisions on your own, an Advance Medical Directive enables someone you trust to do it for you. You might designate an adult son or daughter, a spouse or trusted friend.
If you incorporate this document in an estate plan, you’ll want to seek clarification ahead of time regarding the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPPA). Signing a waiver of this Act ensures that your designated medical agent will be able to gain access to your medical records as needed.
Can you change estate plans?
You may choose to incorporate certain documents in your initial estate plan, then later determine that you’d like to include additional documents or that you need to change or update an existing document. It’s a good idea to ask someone well-versed in Nevada estate planning laws to periodically review your plan.
This helps avoid legal complications, such as often occur if someone neglects to update a plan. For instance, perhaps there is a divorce and remarriage or a new birth in the family. It’s not uncommon for family members or former spouses to challenge a will, especially if they believe you were under duress or not of sound mind when you signed the documents.