Wills, Living Wills, and Power of Attorney
It is important, especially for individuals with minor children or assets, to prepare for the future. At Heymann & Fletcher, Esqs., we can help with planning for the unknown by preparing any or all of three important documents for you. A Power of Attorney allows you to designate someone to act on your behalf in the event you are unable to handle certain tasks for yourself. Your designated Agent or Attorney-in-fact will have authority to make legal decisions about your finances and take actions on your behalf such as paying your bills. This Agent or Attorney-in-fact will have a fiduciary responsibility to act in your interest. A Power of Attorney can be designated to take effect immediately, or upon your becoming disabled at a later time.
Additionally, Heymann & Fletcher, Esqs. can draft an Advanced Medical Directive, also known as a Living Will. This document allows you to instruct medical professionals regarding what care you do or do not want should certain conditions come to pass. You are also able to designate a Health Care Representative who can make decisions on your behalf that are not otherwise covered by your instructions. This document is binding on health care professionals in New Jersey.
Finally, a Will allows you to designate what you want to happen after your death. It can include identifying guardians for minor children, instructions regarding funeral arrangements, and the distribution of your property. You can be as specific as listing individual items you would like to go to certain people, or more general, simply listing the individuals you would like to receive shares of your estate. A Will is a specialized instrument that provides your opportunity to be heard after your death, so it is important to give yourself time to think about what you would like it to contain. If you decide you wish to supplement your Will later, it is sometimes possible for that to be done with a document known as a Codicil, rather than replacing a prior Will.
All of these documents have specific legal requirements in New Jersey, so it is important to have knowledgeable counsel to assist you in preparing for your future needs.