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Estate documents all Kent residents need

The importance of estate planning can never be emphasized enough. Having the necessary documents in place can ensure a person's assets, children and health care needs are protected. This is important even for "millennials."

According to a recent survey, more than half of Americans do not have essential estate planning documents in place. Many people have a problem thinking ahead, whether it be from not worrying about it or just avoiding the topic altogether. But, here are certain estate documents that are essential.

The first is a health care proxy and living will. Although no one wants to think about unexpected medical conditions where they would not be able to make their own decisions, these situations could happen to anyone. A living will is a document that tells doctors what medical treatments a person would want and a health care proxy is a person assigned to make medical decisions as needed. This can help families avoid conflict and make decisions in a less stressful way. The second document everyone needs is a power of attorney. This person would be put in charge of financial decisions if the other becomes incapacitated. The third document everyone should have is a simple will. A will spells out how a person wants their assets distributed upon their death and can list guardians for children as well. It can also be a document that expresses a person's values. Finally, a trust may be a necessary estate document. It can be a good idea if parents want to transfer assets to their children when they reach a certain age or put other provisions on their money.

All Kent residents, including millennials, need basic estate planning documents. A legal professional can help their clients create the documents that make the most sense for their situations.

Source:, "More than half of Americans don't have these essential estate documents, do you?", Zach Conway, Jan. 26, 2018

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