October 19, 2022
While you may be preparing your child for heading off to college by teaching them how to do their laundry and buying things to make their dorm feel more comfortable, there are also important legal implications once your child turns 18 and moves out. This deadline could quickly arrive, which can sever your ability to make important decisions regarding your child and to be informed about them. If your child is approaching college age, consider contacting The Mindful Counsel to learn about the legal documents your child should sign before college by calling (480) 422-6246 and requesting a confidential consultation.
There are various types of documents that can safeguard your child’s interests and perhaps allow you to have more access to vital information while your child is enrolled in college. Some of the most important estate planning documents for college students include:
The Privacy Rule of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act states that parents do not have a legal right to their adult children’s healthcare-related information. Therefore, if a college-aged student gets injured while in college or has a mental health crisis, parents may be unable to help their child, even if the student is still on their health insurance. It is critical to be able to make decisions for you child if they are unable to do so for themselves while at college and away from home.
Arizona’s health care power of attorney allows your college-aged student to designate another person (called an agent) to make medical decisions on their behalf if they are unable to make decisions for themselves. Additionally, your adult child can make decisions about the following subjects or delegate them to their agent:
This document can be a lifesaver in case of an emergency. For example, if your 19-year-old is brought into the emergency room after a car wreck, you could instruct your child’s health care team about what type of treatment to provide if your child has named you as an agent.
A living will directs when to provide and withdraw life support for your child. The living will can provide directions about when to provide or withdraw life-sustaining treatment, including:
A durable power of attorney is a legal document in which your child would designate their agent to make financial decisions for them. The term “durable” means that the designation remains in place even if your child becomes incapacitated. Your agent can access your financial assets and manage them for you. The power of attorney could be broad and allow the named agent to:
Some colleges, banks, or other institutions may require specific power of attorney forms. An estate planning lawyer can help determine your unique needs.
You and your adult child may benefit from other estate planning document for college students. However, these documents may not be necessary in all cases. An experienced estate planning lawyer can explain whether your adult child may need any of the following documents:
For all of these documents, your child is the one in control of which powers to grant to you or others. If you hire an attorney to create these types of documents, your adult child will be the client and the one entering into an attorney/client relationship.
An estate planning lawyer from The Mindful Counsel can help create an estate plan that meets your child’s unique needs by:
We can walk you through the process when you contact us for a confidential case review.
If your child is approaching the age of 18 or a point where they move out of your residence,
Consider contacting The Mindful Counsel by calling (480) 422-6246. Our team can discuss your family’s needs and put together a comprehensive estate plan that meets them. We can also help guide your child to make decisions that establish a strong foundation for the future and a backup plan in case things do not go as planned. We can discuss their options confidentially during an initial consultation.
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18835 North Thompson Peak Parkway, Suite C-220
Scottsdale, Arizona 85255
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