Estate planning is an important part of life. We understand that it may be difficult to discuss the topic of death and how you want to live your remaining days. Though difficult, making a plan with the assistance of experienced counsel is always recommended. Our compassionate attorneys at Mattleman, Weinroth & Miller, P.C. feel it is necessary to make a personal connection with clients in order to understand their wishes. You have goals for your estate and assets. You deserve an attorney who can see your vision through to the end. Our New Jersey attorneys can assist you with making a durable power of attorney, health care proxy, and a living will, to name a few. Estate planning may be an emotional topic, but we are here to ease you through your estate matter. It is better to be prepared than get caught off guard leaving your loved ones with the hard decisions.
People will often ask us if they need a will and who is responsible to follow the directions of that will. A will is a binding legal document that allows a person who has passed away to direct the distribution of their assets. It is important to have a will if you want your property to go to specific people. If you don’t have a will, the state will distribute your assets, and that might be inconsistent with your vision. An executor, or personal administrator, or administrator of a will is responsible to gather the assets of the deceased, pay out any debts that are appropriate, and make any distributions under the will. They are held responsible to fulfill your final wishes and follow the detailed direction of the will, disregarding any bias or emotions.
A power of attorney is a very important document for you to finalize while you have the capacity. A power of attorney grants an agent of your choosing broad rights to act in your place. If you are ever mentally incapacitated, durable powers of attorney are needed to allow the agent to make decisions on your behalf. Usually, a client will name a trusted person to have durable powers of attorney. They will be able to take care of important matters like paying bills, managing investments, and following your medical care wishes. The agent should acknowledge their rights, duties, and responsibilities in an attachment to the power of attorney.
In New Jersey, a healthcare proxy is a person who will act on behalf of a person receiving medical care when they are not able to answer for themselves. Picking a heath care proxy is important. During emergencies, surgery, and any other time when the person is unable to speak due to medical treatment, a health care proxy acts on behalf of that person. They are held responsible for sharing and following your end-of-life care wishes and making any other decisions for your medical care. It is important to share your healthcare proxy with your healthcare provider, with the person you choose, and with anyone else that you think ought to know.
Estate planning is an emotional step everyone needs to address. We know that it is a difficult conversation, but you need to consider your vision for the estate. You probably have an idea where your assets belong and planning ahead is in your best interest. Having a strong, established living will, power of attorney, and health care proxy are a good step to relieving your family from more strife than necessary. Contact our New Jersey elder law attorneys at Mattleman, Weinroth & Miller, P.C., who are ready to ease you through this uncomfortable conversation and make sure that your wishes and vision are followed.