When a child turns 18, thetransition to adulthood seems to be just beginning. And even if the new, youngadult is not quite an adult in their parentâ€™s eyes, legally the transition is done. That being said, when should your adultchildren have their own estate plan?
MarketWatch recently addressed this issue in an article titled â€œWhy your kids need their own estate plan.â€
Few 18-year-olds have their owninvestments, retirement and insurance, let alone the complication of spouse andchildren. For many, however, it is just a matter of time. Why, then, should an18-year-old newly-minted adult need a plan for their estate?
Once this birthday milestone iscrossed, these â€œchildrenâ€ turned â€œlegal adultsâ€ have new legal rights andresponsibilities. In fact, the basics of estate planning are as important forthem as for their parents.
Consider a very common exampleof why young adults need a basic estate plan: healthcare. At age 17, if theyhave an accident, then you (their parents and legal guardians) can step in tomake their medical decisions, pay their bills, and even demand grade cards fromtheir school. At age 18, however, all of that changes.
Should your adult child beincapacitated in a serious accident, then you are no more than a perfectstranger when it comes to your â€œlegalâ€ ability to take care of them and theirbusiness. You have hit a legal wall of expensive red tape. Fortunately, thiswall is avoidable by proper planning.
Bottom line: whether you are anewly-minted young adult, middle-aged, or elderly, proper estate planning is amatter of personal responsibility. Basic estate planning tools include a healthcare proxy and a financial durable power of attorney.
For more information on this and otherestate planning subjects, contact IdahoEstate Planning and schedule aconsultation. Remember,good planning is no accident.