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Law Offices of James C. Shields

Reducing Stress with Estate Planning During the COVID-19 Pandemic

As California continues to struggle with the COVID-19 pandemic, stress levels are high. Much of this stress is related to the unknowns brought about by the health crisis. Yet, you're not helpless in these challenging times. In partnership with an attorney, you can create estate planning documents that eliminate specific uncertainties connected to the pandemic.

Uncertainty: Who Will Make Medical Decisions If COVID-19 Incapacitates Me?

Now is a good time to choose someone you trust as your agent to make medical decisions for you. The document that you need is called a durable power of attorney for health. Sometimes, this document is also referred to as an Advance Health Care Directive or AHCD.

Uncertainty: If I'm Incapacitated, How Can I Prevent Unwanted Medical Procedures?

There's a legal document for providing guidance to those who are making your healthcare decisions. It's a living will. In it, you can state how you want your medical care handled in the event you're unable to communicate your wishes.

Uncertainty: COVID-19 Made Me Realize I Haven't Prepared for My Family's Future. Now What?

You have many options, but what's right for your family depends on your circumstances. Your estate planning attorney can offer guidance that fits your family's unique needs. For example, a single parent with minor children needs a will to name a guardian for them. Otherwise, the state must select their guardian without any guidance from you.

Another common situation is you may have assets you want to pass on to your heirs. However, you don't want your heirs to have to deal with the hassles of probate court. If that describes your situation, putting those assets into a revocable living trust could be the right decision for your family.

Our estate planning lawyers are available to help you create the documents that can give you peace of mind during these difficult times. Contact us to schedule an appointment.