A note on COVID-19, Health Care and Estate Planning

There is plenty to be concerned about during this coronavirus (COVID-19) public health emergency.  It has forced many of us to think about whether we are well prepared with updated Wills or other Estate Planning documents.  Now more than ever it is important to have your Estate Planning documents in place and currently updated to reflect your wishes and recent changes in Connecticut laws.  It is imperative that you have plans in place to communicate your wishes about who you would want to make medical decisions for you if your were unable to communicate; what kind of end-of-life care you want or don't want, including heroic measures and pain management; who would be able to pay your bills or file your tax returns if you were sick and unable to do it for yourself; and lastly, who you want to leave your prized possessions to.  Now that we have more time to spend with our families, it is a good time to have the deeply personal conversations needed to make our wishes known and legally binding on our health care providers.

The Estate Planning community has developed best practices to balance keeping everyone safe with also being able to meet these critical legal needs during this pandemic.  Using remote applications like FaceTime or Zoom and e-mail, we can safely create or update your legal documents.  Each Estate Plan should include a General Power of Attorney which allows someone you name to handle your affairs if you are not able to; an Advance Health Care Directive which names someone who is authorized to make medical decisions for you if you are unable to communicate your wishes; a "Living Will" which tells your doctors you don't want "heroic measures" at the end stages of your life if your condition is deemed terminal; HIPAA Authorization and Waivers which allow disclosure of your medical information to someone else; and Final Disposition instructions expressing your wishes for burial or cremation.  

I will send you drafts of your documents to review and answer all of your questions ahead of time.  Then when your are ready to sign, we will observe safety protocols designed to minimize risk of exposure for everyone.

Please call me at 860-999-3264 with any questions.  You can download an Estate Planning Questionnaire from my website.  We will be happy to serve anyone with active illness symptoms after a period of recovery.  

This is a time of uncertainty and anxiety for us all.  Putting your Estate Planning in order can help put your mind at ease for some of the most important decisions you can make in your life.