Why YOU Need an Estate Plan
An estate plan ensures that YOUR end-of-life wishes are honored. This includes distribution of your personal and real property to your beneficiaries and the designation of persons (fiduciaries) who will carry out your wishes. If you do not make advance directives (Will, health care proxy, power of attorney) while you are alive and mentally well, someone else (usually, a judge called a Surrogate in New York State) will do so for you.
Who will make health care and financial decisions for You? Those persons should be of your choosing.
These decisions will affect You prior to and after your death. An estate plan generally consists of three documents: 1) a Last Will and Testament, 2) a Power of Attorney, and 3) a Health Care Proxy. If you are of sound mind and memory at the time of execution of these documents, now is the time to execute all documents. All three documents are important and powerful - and may be revised any time afterwards during your lifetime.
An estate plan prepared by an attorney is strongly recommended to properly solidify your intentions for the disposition of your estate and to ensure your healthcare plans and control over your assets are in YOUR hands.