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Maryland residents may wish to go beyond estate planning basics

Many individuals may consider a will the only document necessary for an estate plan. However, thorough estate planning could do more than designate beneficiaries for assets. By creating additional legal documents, Maryland residents could ensure that they specify their wishes related to finances, medical treatment and other personal issues in the event of incapacitation. 

When an individual becomes incapacitated, it is likely that he or she will be unable to make decisions for him or herself. Therefore, planning ahead for such an event could prevent an undesired individual being named as a power of attorney agent. By creating a power of attorney document, individuals can name the party or parties they see fit to make financial and/or medical decisions in the event that those individuals lose the ability to do so.

In a similar vein, individuals may also wish to create advanced medical directives. With this type of document, parties can express their wishes for medical treatment in the event of certain health issues. Having such directives on file could allow family members to feel more comfortable moving forward with certain actions as they would know that it was the loved one's wish. 

There are many steps to estate planning that go beyond just the basics. Many individuals may be fine with simply creating a will, but other parties may wish to find out more information on other estate plan options. Interested Maryland residents may wish to consult with experienced attorneys who may be able to provide specific information for personal cases and advise on beneficial steps.

Source: Forbes, "5 Documents You Need To Avoid Costly Estate Planning Errors", Peter Lazaroff, Oct. 16, 2016

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