LGBTQ+ Estate Planning
As a member of the LGBTQ+ community, your estate planning is critical to ensure your spouse/partner and family will be protected if met with resistance in the recognition of your relationship, even if you are legally married. Without a plan in place, your partner could be legally prohibited from managing your affairs, having any role in the decision-making of care, or even access to you if rendered incapacitated.
Benefits of Planning
Proper estate planning will ensure you and your spouse/partner receive all the state and federal benefits of your marriage while avoiding probate, maintaining privacy and protecting your assets.
Durable Power of Attorney
A Durable Power of Attorney allows one person to act on behalf of another. For same sex couples, it is important to execute both a financial power of attorney and health care surrogate in favor of each other. Otherwise, the property of one partner could be completely out of the hands of the other if the first becomes incapacitated or otherwise unavailable.
A Health Care Surrogate allows you to appoint your spouse, partner or other loved one to make health care decisions on your behalf if you are incapacitated. For same sex relationships, this helps avoid situations where a spouse or partner may not be given access to his or her incapacitated spouse or partner.
This is critical for same-sex couples, to eliminate the risk of the court passing over your partner and designating someone else (even a stranger) to be your guardian.
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