Documents for College Children
When your child reaches the age of 18, they are considered a legal adult and, as a parent, your rights have dramatically decreased. Therefore it is important to make sure that your child has proper legal documents in place in the event of an emergency. Without them, parents no longer have legal right to make healthcare decisions or manage their child’s financial affairs.
Every parent should have these documents for an unmarried child over 18: Durable Power of Attorney, Healthcare Surrogate, Living Will, and Preneed Guardian.
Durable Power of Attorney: a power of attorney is a legal document that gives the holder the power to act in your place. A durable power of attorney stays in effect when the subject becomes incapacitated (a loss of mental capacity). These powers can include the ability to pay bills, access financial accounts, manage investments, etc. Without this document in place, a loved one may have to go through the courts to obtain authority to handle the subject’s affairs
Healthcare Surrogate: an adult who is appointed to make healthcare decisions for the subject when they are unable to make them for themselves. This need is backed up by facts. Accidents are the leading cause of death for young adults aged 18 to 25 and over a quarter million are hospitalized with non lethal injuries annually
Living Will: states wishes for end of life medical care for when the person cannot communicate
Preneed Guardian: names someone to serve as the subject’s guardian in the event of incapacity
These documents grant another person authority to make medical and financial decisions for the 18-year-old should he or she become incapacitated. Often, it’s you, the parent, who is named as power of attorney for the teen. While 18-year-olds are adults in the eyes of the law, most are still fully dependent on their parents, both financially and emotionally.
We hope this information is useful. If you have a specific case or a question, please don’t hesitate to call our office.
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Probate and Trust Admin
Biblical Estate Planning
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This web site is designed for general information only. The information presented at this site should not be construed to be formal legal advice nor the formation of a lawyer/client relationship.