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When people think about estate planning, it may conjure up notions of dividing multi-million dollar estates that include multiple homes, tens of millions in stock options and even car collections. Of course, this may not be the reality that many people face, but it does not mean that ordinary people don’t need to have basic estate planning tools at their disposal.

Think about it.  If you have specific concerns about how you want to be cared for if you are unable to speak, or who you would want to make decisions on your behalf, there are things you can do to protect your interests, as well as the people you love. This post will highlight them. 

A Will – The main point of having a will is to explain how you want to your assets distributed when you pass away. This includes how outstanding expenses will be paid, and who will be in charge of administering your estate, among other things.

A Durable Power of Attorney – As we mentioned earlier, a power of attorney allows you to appoint the person of your choice to act as your agent in the event you become incapacitated. This allows your agent to make legal and financial decisions for you.

Healthcare Directive – Also known as a living will, allows you to make specific directions surrounding medical care in the event you cannot express them yourself. For instance, it can specify your desire to have continuing life saving procedures performed or cancelled one your condition reaches a certain point. You may also assign a representative to make decisions for you.