A 25-year-old gets into a horrific car accident and is in a vegetative state for life!
A 65-year-old has a stroke and can't manage his affairs.
These are real life examples that as estate planning attorneys we see often. So, what happens if somebody loses capacity? Well, think of all the things that you are able to do on your own: pay your mortgage/rent, withdraw money from the bank account, sell your home, invest in your 401(k), pay your car insurance, and the list goes on. If you lose capacity and you can't act for yourself, you won't be able to do any of these things. So, what happens?
During your lifetime if you cannot act for yourself and you've done no planning then the court will have to intervene. The court will appoint an individual (family or a professional who does this for a living) to help make legal, financial and health care decisions for you. Your family or loved ones have to hire an attorney to start the guardianship. Being in a guardianship case is expensive and completely avoidable. The funds to pay for this process that lasts years will be coming out of your bank account or your assets will be sold to pay for it. Would you rather handle these affairs internally and save your life earnings or do you want to have to go through the court system in the event you lose capacity? If you want to avoid the court, contact us or watch our presentation to protect yourself.
If your loved ones have done no planning and you find yourself that you must do a guardianship, please reach out to our firm at 239-529-8731.