Not many aging Indiana residents think about working on Medical Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment papers with their doctor, but perhaps they should. As someone ages, taking steps to address potential medical issues and illnesses might help loved ones if a calamity occurs. An older person may want to look at several important health care and estate planning steps before too much time passes.
Things to consider with senior estate planning
Besides medical documents such as a health care proxy and a living will, a senior may wish to review a traditional last will and testament to determine if any changes appear necessary. Perhaps some time passed since the writing of the first will, and change is now essential.
Is the person named the executor in the original will still the top person for the job? An executor performs essential duties during probate, so choosing the best person is crucial for smoothly handling estate matters.
If an attorney did not provide assistance and counsel during the original writing of the will, now might be the right time to set up a meeting at a law firm. Mistakes that render a will invalid could cause chaos for heirs.
Addressing financial matters
A senior reviewing their estate plan could also consider current situations when coming up with strategies to make things easier. An older person might have difficulty managing his or her finances, filing taxes or paying bills. Perhaps awarding a highly trusted individual with power of attorney status makes sense. That person could take over essential responsibilities for someone not entirely up to the task.
Tax issues may extend to beneficiaries as well. If beneficiaries receive an inherited IRA, they would need to pay taxes on distributions. Making heirs aware of such things could help them plan for the future.
Estate planning and probate preparation can work out to everyone’s benefit. Working with an attorney and avoiding delays may cut down on the chances of problems.