Estate plans are made up of numerous documents, each of which plays an important role in ensuring that all your wishes will be carried out upon your death. Leaving out a particular document doesn’t nullify the legally binding nature of your other documents, but it does leave part of your estate at the mercy of the state. Residents of San Jose, California, are advised to compile all the documents that create an estate plan to ensure that all their wishes are met.
While every document in an estate plan is important, there is perhaps nothing more important than a will. A will, which includes the name of an executor who is responsible for ensuring that all the terms and conditions of the will are met, is your opportunity to leave something to all your loved ones. If you do not have a will, you are said to have died “intestate,” and your estate will go through the lengthy probate process.
Medical power of attorney
In the event that you can no longer take care of yourself, you will need someone to make medical decisions for you. Ideally, you will go over your wishes concerning life support and other medical care directives with this person before choosing him or her. This individual should be someone you trust to fulfill your wishes regardless of his or her emotional attachment to you and your medical care.
This document isn’t necessarily about the legal or financial implications associated with it, but having a written copy of your funeral plans makes things much easier for your loved ones. Instead of wondering what type of memorial services you want, if you want any at all, they will have your written wishes. You can also leave written directives concerning cremation or burial in this portion of your estate plan.
Estate planning is largely a legal process, and the documents that you include will be processed through the court. Because of this legal nature, you should employ the services of an estate planning attorney to ensure that every part of your estate plan holds up in court.