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Review Plans for Disability

Individuals commonly purchase life insurance and make wills and other estate plans to protect their survivors, but disability can be just as much of a concern.  Disability insurance can provide income when you are unable to work, but your planning should also include instructions on what should happen if you are no longer able to make important decisions.  As part of an annual estate planning review, you should also revisit:

Healthcare directives — Like other components of your estate plan, your living will or power of attorney for health care (proxy) should be reviewed frequently to ensure that your needs and treatment wishes are unchanged — and that any person designated to make health care decisions for you is still willing and able to serve.

Arrangements for financial decisions — A durable general power of attorney can provide financial management when a person becomes physically or mentally disabled.  Individuals who have revocable living trusts can name a standby trustee who would serve the same function.  Ensure that the provisions you have made, and the persons you have named to act on your behalf, would fulfill your needs if you ceased to have decision-making capacity.  Keep in mind that failure to plan for someone to handle your financial affairs could require a court to appoint a guardian, which can often be cumbersome, costly and time-consuming.

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Contact the KQED Gift Planning department for more information or to notify us if we are included in your estate plan.

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