You need to plan for tomorrow – today.
- Last Will and Testament
- Declaration of a Desire to Die a Natural Death (“Living Will”)
- Health Care Power of Attorney
- Durable Financial Power of Attorney
- Legacy Packet
If you don’t have your estate documents in place, contact our office for a free consultation. We generally serve the areas of Moncks Corner, Summerville, Goose Creek, Ridgeville, Hanahan, Charleston, North Charleston, Berkeley, Dorchester, Orangeburg, Holly Hill and Santee.
The information below is designed to answer some of the most frequently asked questions about the basic documents and help you better understand the contents of each. Please understand that every document may not be correct for everyone’s situation, and that each person’s estate plan is different based on many factors. You should consult our office if there are any questions regarding your particular estate plan.
Last Will and Testament
How often do I need to review my Will?
“I’ve had my Will in place for 25 years.” Chances are, you’ve had children or grandchildren born, you’ve married, divorced, moved, or had other life-changing events that necessitate the updating of your Estate Plan. Your Will should be reviewed by a competent professional at least every 5 to 10 years and when any of the following occur:
- Change in marital status
- Death of a family member
- Birth or adoption of a new child
- Purchase of a major asset
- Declining health
- Substantial change in net assets
- Significant tax law changes
Will I have to go through Probate Court?
Living Will or “Declaration of Desire to Die a Natural Death”
This document is essentially a “declaration” (set of instructions) to your doctor whereby he or she will know your desires should you be unable to communicate them. A Living Will does not apply if you have a non-terminal health issue. (See Health Care Power of Attorney.) As with any of the Life Planning documents, the Living Will can be changed or revoked at any time. There are specific procedures, however, so make sure you consult with our office prior to making changes.
Health Care Power of Attorney
Durable General (or Financial) Power of Attorney
Why do you need a Durable General Power of Attorney?
What if you don’t have one?
You have to be careful in who you select as your agent. For a Durable Power of Attorney to have its full effect, the document should allow your named agent to sell property, draft funds from bank accounts, apply for credit in your name, etc. Your agent MUST be someone you trust with this very task.