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Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away

Posted on Wed Feb 27, 2019, on Estate Planning

From Our “Ask a Question” Mailbag: “Hi, can you give me examples of Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away?”

Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away

Peter Klenk, Estate Planning Lawyer.

2 Ideas of Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away.

Most people with adult children depend on them in their estate plan. But, special planning is needed if children live far away.  This article assumes you know a bit about estate planning, so please follow the link if you would like a refresher.  Estate Planning Lawyer. Go ahead and read a bit, this page will be ready and waiting once you have the basics firmly in place.  

Provide Your Adult Children a Copy of your Living Will.

  • Provide your children with an electronic copy of your Living Will Medical Power of Attorney if you have named them as your primary or contingent Surrogate.  If the only copy is in your house, they cannot help you until they secure that copy.  If they live far away, then this could cause a dangerous delay.  Follow this link for more information about Living Wills. Living Will Attorney.
    • Example.  Mr. Philadelphia names his son, Camden, as his Medical Power of Attorney Surrogate. Camden lives in Florida while Mr. Philadephia lives in Philadelphia. Mr. Philadelphia had his Living Will Attorney email, Camden, a copy of the Medical Power of Attorney.  Camden keeps this copy on his laptop. Sometime later Mr. Philadelphia suffered a heart attack and was taken to Pennsylvania Hospital.  Unconscious, Mr. Philadelphia was unable to authorize treatments. Camden was able to email the scanned copy to the nurses’ station. After confirming Camden’s identity as the Surrogate, the doctor was able to communicate his treatment plan. Camden authorized the treatment, then was able to arrange a flight to Philadelphia.  If Camden didn’t have an easily communicable and accessible copy of the Medical Power of Attorney Mr. Philadelphia’s treatment would have been delayed.

Forming a Revocable Living Trust When a Child’s Help is Needed for Finances.

  • Mr. and Mrs. Doylestown are having trouble managing their money. Bills are going unpaid. They trust their daughter, New Hope, who lives in San Francisco.  They know they need help, but don’t want to put their daughter onto their accounts. New Hope’s marriage is not going well, and if a divorce were filed they are sure her husband would claim part of the joint accounts.  Further, they have been told that some banks hesitate on recognizing powers of attorney and insist on the Agent coming to the building in person.  Instead, they have their Revocable Living Trust Lawyer form a joint revocable trust.  They name themselves as co-trustees but also name New Hope as a co-trustee.  New Hope only has the power to use the trust assets for Mr. and Mrs. Doylestown’s benefit. She has no ownership interest, so her husband gets no rights to the property.  They move their real estate and accounts into the Revocable Trust.  The banks recognize the Revocable Trust because they have opened the accounts. The Trust terms allow New Hope to manage the money, from anywhere. 

In Conclusion: Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away.

In today’s electronic world you can have a child who lives far away be an active part of your estate plan. However, address the distance as part of your Estate Plan. I hope this article, providing examples of Estate Planning When Children Live Far Away proved helpful. We are always happy to brainstorm with you about your own, unique situation. 

Let our Estate Planning Lawyers help walk you through what can be a confusing process. To begin with, call to speak to one of our Estate Planning Attorneys.  By all means, our lawyers are ready to answer your questions. In fact, feel free to contact our office for a free consultation. Ultimately our goal is to make the process as painless as possible!

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Medical Power of Attorney, Revocable Trust

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