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Thinking beyond death

Most Americans believe in an afterlife – a life after death. But “thinking beyond death” doesn’t refer to heaven or hell, it refers to estate plans that include more than distribution of your assets to your loved ones when you pass on. It refers to a plan that takes into account the very real possibilities that something will happen to cause you hardship while alive.

In other words, you should have in place a plan that empowers someone of your choice to make decisions for you if illness renders you unable to make decisions for yourself. Here in Florida, a health care surrogate designation and a health care power of attorney are vital tools that help you to protect yourself in the event of incapacitation.

Power of attorney can also empower the person of your choice to manage financial matters for you, which can include selling or managing real estate interests or even the authority to enter into binding agreements.

A recent article in USA Today touched on all of the above points, as well as the powerful point that if you do not make decisions now about these matters, others will – and those others will include the state of Florida. That can mean that “an estranged family member might get possession of your house,” the newspaper says, or “a grandchild with special needs might not get the resources you want him to have.”

Estate planning helps you protect your family and it helps you protect yourself. Contact a Brevard County law firm that has the experience and knowledge to efficiently guide you through the process.

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