Assisting College Age Children With Essential Estate Planning

One question that we’re often asked by parents is what happens when their child turns 18 year old and goes away to college – will they be able to access information and make decisions for their child when necessary? Do young college age children and grandchildren need to have Estate Planning documents?

Our answer is that elder law actually starts at the age of 18 – it is very important for anyone over that age to have essential estate planning documents in place, especially advance directives like a Health Care Surrogate and a Durable Power of Attorney. Then parents can assist adult children with medical and financial matters in case they are not able to make these decisions for themselves due to an accident, illness, or if the adult child is inexperienced and asks for assistance. Healthcare industry privacy laws and financial institutions’ regulations make it imperative that a parent has proper authorization from a young adult to access information and act on his or her behalf. The same legal constraints also affect the ability to get academic information from colleges and universities.

With offices in Orange Park, Jacksonville, and St. Augustine, our Elder Law Attorneys help young adults in North Florida create important Estate Planning documents that include a broad Durable Power of Attorney, Health Care Surrogate, and HIPAA release authorization.

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