Two Documents All Kids Should Have When Leaving For College

Hi, there! Bridget Mackay, I’m an attorney in Petaluma, California, and I practice in the area of the estate planning; so that’s wills, trusts, trust administration and probates.

Today, I want to talk to you about going back to school. You may have some children in your life, adult children, that are heading off to college, and I want to give you this tip of advice as your kids leave the nest. That is, you’re going to want two documents that will save a lot of time and energy should they get into trouble.

The first is a durable power of attorney. This would allow you as their parent, if some emergency went down, to get into their checking accounts or any kind of financial institutions that they belong to, have opened up accounts once they’ve moved to college.

The second is a health care directive, and this would allow you as a parent to make decisions for your over 18-year-old child if there’s a health emergency. A client of mine likes to joke that she gets bills in the mail for her son’s medical care, but can’t call the doctor and talk to his doctor about anything that’s going on with him. But if you had this document, a health care directive, you can make health decisions for your college-aged child.

If you have any children leaving the nest, at this back to school, make sure you consult a knowledgeable estate planning attorney and get those two essential documents in place for them so that you can help them. Thank you.

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