Planning for Incapacity

It is human nature to avoid considering one’s own incapacity or death. It is, however, vital to plan for these difficult events to ensure your personal affairs, your wishes, and your family are provided for. In particular, it is of the utmost importance to implement planning measures to avoid difficult decisions and family turmoil in the event of your inability to care for yourself. Whether you seek more information regarding a Power of Attorney, a Living Trust, or a Declaration of Guardian in Advance of Need, the Houston Estate Planning attorneys at Smith & Garg are available to answer your incapacity planning questions.

You will often hear the term “Advance Directives” in the process of planning for incapacity. In general, the term “Advance Directives” is used to describe a group of documents generally executed as part of an estate planning portfolio that communicate in advance certain authorizations or wishes. They are used to memorialize your wishes with regard to your health care and financial affairs in the event that you are unable to personally communicate your wishes. These documents are not testamentary in nature, as is a Last Will and Testament; Advance Directives are effective and come into use during their creator’s lifetime. The most common Advance Directives include a Statutory Durable Power of Attorney, Medical Power of Attorney, Directive to Physicians, and HIPAA Release and Authorization. All of the listed documents are part of Garg & Associates’s standard Will Package, as each is of the utmost importance to your estate plan.

A Designation of Guardian for Oneself is another document commonly used to select, well in advance of the need for a court-appointed guardianship, who should serve in such capacity should you have the need for the appointment of a guardian during your lifetime. The document’s premise is to abate any questions as to who should serve in this role if and when you are unable to make such a choice.

The execution of a Revocable Inter Vivos Trust, or “Living Trust,” is another vehicle often utilized in incapacity planning. By executing a valid Living Trust, the grantor (i.e., trust creator) will transfer his or her assets into trust, rather than maintaining outright ownership of the property. The grantor often serves as the initial trustee, and designates a successor trustee to step in to manage his or her assets upon the grantor’s incapacity. This trust arrangement and selection of a successor trustee allows for the smooth transition of property management without need for a formal guardianship or other proceeding.

At Garg & Associates, each of your incapacity planning options will be thoroughly discussed and explained to you prior to execution or implementation to ensure your confidence that such delicate but important affairs have been expertly addressed. If you have questions regarding Estate Planning or otherwise planning for incapacity, we invite you to give us a call today.
We invite you to contact us for a consultation. Call Garg & Associates, PC at 281-362-2865 or complete our contact form.

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Garg & Associates, PC | 21 Waterway Avenue, Suite 300 | The Woodlands, Texas 77380 Please call 281-362-2865 | Fax: 866-743-4506
Serving The Woodlands, Spring, Houston, Conroe, Kingwood, Tomball, Cypress, Huntsville, Cleveland, Stafford, Montgomery County, Harris County, West Oaks, Memorial, Sugar
Land, River Oaks, Alief, Stafford, Missouri City, and Southwest Houston Texas.