As you prepare your child to go to college, you are probably making a list of everything your child will need. Regardless of whether this is your child’s first year at college or his fourth year, every college student needs various things each year as they return to school. From school supplies to new clothes and dorm furniture to a new cell phone, the things your college student needs before going to college seems endless.
The one thing that many parents forget as they prepare their child to go off to college is the need for certain legal documents. Now that your child is 18 years of age, you do not have the same legal authority with regard to your child. Should something happen while your child is away at collage, you may need certain legal documents in order to take certain actions to protect your child’s best interest and welfare.
The three legal documents every college student needs as he or she goes to college are:
Durable Power of Attorney
A Durable Power of Attorney allows you to act on your child’s behalf in all legal matters with the same authority as your child has to transact business in his or her name. With a Durable Power of Attorney, you can continue to transact business in your child’s name such as manage investments, open and close bank accounts, and transfer and purchase assets. With a Durable Power of Attorney, you can also include a clause that makes the power of attorney valid in the event your child is incapacitated for any reason. The goal is that your child is safe while at college; however, should something happen, it is vital that you have this document in place.
Healthcare Power of Attorney
Now that your child has reached 18 years of age, he or she can make healthcare and medical decisions without your input or approval. You need a Healthcare Power of Attorney giving you the authority to make these decisions on your child’s behalf should your child become incapacitated or is unable to make a decision for any reason. In addition to the Healthcare Power of Attorney, you should also have your child sign a HIPPA Release authorizing medical personnel to release information and medical records to you regarding your child’s healthcare and medical treatments.
Last Will and Testament
Every adult needs a Will regardless of his or her age and financial situation. A Will is very important if your college student owns real estate, investment accounts, or other assets of any substantial value. However, regardless of your college student’s financial situation, having a Will does make the probate process easier. If your child passes away without a Will and you must probate his or her estate, the intestate laws of our state will dictate how the estate is administered. It is easy to avoid this situation by discussing a Will with your college student and having him or her execute a Will before leaving for college.
We Can Prepare the Legal Documents Your College Student Needs
Before Going to College
The attorneys of Estate Law Partners, LLC practice law in the areas of Probate, Wills, Estate Planning, and Trusts. We assist clients in and around Madison, Wisconsin with all matters pertaining to these areas of law. We personalize our services to meet the needs of each client and our attorneys make house calls for our clients if they are unable to come to our office. Contact our office by calling (608) 268-5751 to schedule a consultation or use our online contact form.