A cancer diagnosis can make you reevaluate life and your estate planning.
The dreaded diagnosis.
If you or a loved one ever hear those words, your heart will drop and your world will turned upside down.
According to a recent Santa Maria Times article titled “What is the importance of estate planning, advance health care directives?,” you should prioritize estate planning as well as treatment.
You must also prepare for the worst case scenario.
You must be ready.
It has been said that each of us should be ready with each breath to preach, pray, sing, or die.
Where do you start?
Develop a plan for your finances and get your legal affairs in order.
Not knowing what would happen to your loved ones and your assets if you die can add to the stress you are experiencing.
What if you have an estate plan?
If it is a few years old or your situation in life has changed, you should review your estate plan with an experienced estate planning attorney.
He or she will be able to advise you and make any necessary changes.
What estate planning pieces will you want in place?
A “Five Wishes Living Will” can be beneficial in stating your emotional, personal, spiritual, and medical needs.
A durable power of attorney for health care decisions will allow you to designate a trusted agent to make medical decisions on your behalf should you become permanently or temporarily incapacitated.
A health care treatment directive allows you to provide specific guidance on medical treatment and care.
A general durable power of attorney for finances allows you to select a trusted agent to carry out your transactions and even file your tax returns should you become incapacitated.
While you are creating your estate plan, you should review your retirement accounts, investments, and bank accounts to ensure they will pass to the proper individuals.
Once you have your estate plan, make sure it is organized and instructions are clear.
Taking these steps will provide peace of mind so you can focus your attention on treatment and living with your cancer diagnosis.
Reference: Santa Maria Times (February 18, 2019) “What is the importance of estate planning, advance health care directives?”