What is a living will?
A living will is a document which evidences your desire to refuse medical treatment if you were to find yourself unable to make medicals decisions yourself. The living will generally is used to withdraw life support treatment.


By having a living will, your wishes about the type of medical treatment you desire or also at which point you would want medical treatment to end would be clear. A living will states your intentions when you are physically and mentally unable to do so. A Health Care Proxy designates who will make medical decisions if you are unable to do so.


If you feel strongly about the type of medical treatment you receive and want to remain in control of your life perhaps a living will would be right for you. Consider a living will now while you have the ability to do so.


What goes into my will?
There is no set formula for what goes into a will. Everyone has their own idea of what they want their will and estate plan to accomplish. It is important to discuss with your lawyer what your desires are. You and your lawyer, working together, will determine the best way to achieve your goals so that your property is transferred exactly as you wish. When giving gifts it is necessary to be specific as to whom you are making the bequest to. Use the person’s full name and address so as to prevent any question after your death. If you are dividing your estate between your children and want everything split equally your will should state this. Have you considered what you would like done with your bequests if the person to whom you are leaving the gift predeceases you? Do you want the gift to pass to their heirs? One of the most important parts of your will is the Residuary Clause. This covers all assets not specifically given to someone. When preparing your will it is very important that you be specific and clear.


Should I establish a Declaration of Homestead to protect the equity in my home?
A property owner claiming the homestead on behalf of his family or spouse can protect the equity in his home up to $500,000.00.Having a homestead may protect the equity in your home from lawsuits brought about by bad debts, accidents where the insurance coverage is inadequate or attachments to name just a few. Having a homestead does not protect your home in all instances (there are specific exceptions which are not protected) but it is good insurance for a relatively small cost.