Myth 10: I Have a Will, Isn’t That Enough?

By Charlie Davis

A Last Will and Testament is an important part of every estate plan. However, a Will is not the only part of a plan. Most individuals have assets that will not b controlled by the terms of a Will at their death (these assets are called “non-probate” assets). Oftentimes, these non-probate assets are the most valuable assets owned by the individual. Common examples include life insurance and retirement accounts. A comprehensive or well-crafted estate plan includes ensuring that all of the client’s assets, including the non-probate assets, will b distributed according to the client’s wishes as the client’s death. A complete plan will also address issues that could arise during your lifetime, including the possibility that you will be unable to act on your own behalf in connection with healthcare and financial decision-making. To address these issues, your complete estate plan should include a Durable General Power of Attorney, a Health care Power of Attorney, an Advanced Directive for a Natural Death (also known as a “living Will”) and a general HIPAA authorization.

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