Posted on May 18, 2021

Estate Planning Starts at 18: 2 Documents for Peace of Mind

It’s amazing to watch our children grow up — from small bundles of joy completely reliant on their parents, through their graduations and growth into independent young adults ready to take on the world.

Before we know it, the baby we held in our arms just yesterday turns 18, a bright milestone in every young adult’s life. 

Prior to a child’s 18th birthday, parents are legally empowered to make all of their medical and financial decisions.  But what most people don’t realize is that upon their 18th birthday the young adult is now legally authorized to manage his or her affairs without any interference.

However, if an event, injury or illness renders your young adult unable to make their own decisions, parents now can’t step in and make medical or financial decisions for them — despite the fact you could do this before they turned 18.

After turning 18, your young adult has to legally empower you to make decisions on their behalf.  It must be done in advance of any problem occurring, or you won’t be able to help.

Two Essential Estate Planning Documents

  • Power of Attorney: Appoints someone (or multiple people) to manage the young adult’s financial affairs if they are unable to do so for themselves due to injury, illness or some other event.
  • Living Will (aka Advance Directive with Health Care Proxy): Appoints someone to speak for them and interact with medical providers if they can’t do it themself at the time of their incapacity.  It also expresses medical treatment the young adult would or would not want.

Without these documents, parents would have to file for guardianship on an emergency basis and ask the court to authorize them to help their young adult.  A Power of Attorney and Living Will saves you tremendous time, money and anguish.

The “Young Adult Decision Making” Package

The legal package Price & Price has created is a quick, easy and low-cost opportunity to prepare and execute these important documents. It can make a great 18th birthday gift, giving both you and your young adult legal protection and peace of mind.

Creating these decision-making documents is simple and inexpensive. The cost for these services is currently just $275.00 for the first young adult in the family, and $150.00 for each additional individual.

The process can be completed in fewer than seven days:

  • Questionnaire that the young adult completes
  • Phone consultation to review questionnaire with young adult (and parents/fiduciaries if desired)
  • Preparation of Power of Attorney and Living Will documents
  • Documents drafts sent for review
  • Phone call to answer any questions (if necessary)
  • In-person signing with witnesses and notary (only young adult needs to attend)
  • Final documents and copies will be provided with explanation on how to use them

If your son or daughter is over 18 but doesn’t yet have these documents, get these done. Everyone in the family will be happy you have the legal authority to help your young adult if an unfortunate situation was to ever occur.

Contact us today to schedule preparation of the Young Adult Decision-Making legal package.

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Price & Price attorneys have received recognition from various groups and publications. Specific awards are noted on our attorney bios. More information about each of these awards and the methodology used for selection can be found on the following links. Super Lawyers and SJ Magazine 2017 Top Attorneys. No aspect of these accolades has been approved by the Supreme Court of New Jersey.

35 Kings Highway East #110
Haddonfield, NJ 08033
Phone: 856.429.5522