The exercise of setting your children up for the future in the event of a fatal car accident can enlighten you about what is most important to you, and what you really want for your children. Hiring an experienced car accident lawyer to help you with these documents can benefit you greatly. You need to be sure you are working with a lawyer who is not only going to put in place these five necessary documents, but will make life as easy as possible for your family, keep your loved ones out of court and help get them easy access to your assets in the midst of a crisis.
Five legal documents you need in case of a fatal car accident
Kids Protection Plan (KPP). No matter the size of your bank account, if you have a child depending on you must have a Kids Protection Plan (KPP). A KPP begins with naming legal guardians to raise your children if anything happens to you and your spouse. It will also name friends and family members who can care for your children in the short term, so that they will never have to be given to the care of strangers. Finally, a KPP will confidentially exclude anyone you know you would never want to serve as guardian of your children.
Financial Durable Power of Attorney. A financial durable power of attorney is something every adult needs, even if you don’t have little children at home. This document is what will let your family access your bank accounts, pay your bills, and make financial and legal decisions for you if you are hospitalized or otherwise incapacitated.
Health Care Directive (Living Will). This document does two very important things: Appoint the person you want to make health care decisions for you if you cannot make them for yourself. Also, it will tell your appointed decision-maker how you want those decisions to be made.
Trust. A living trust is the single best way to make life as easy as possible for the people you love. It keeps things completely private, out of court, and confirms your assets are passed in the way you want, to the people you want, easily and quickly.
Will. Your will is the least important document every parent needs, contrary to popular belief. A will sets forth what you want to happen to your assets at the time of your death. But, when there’s a will and your assets are owned in your name, the will merely acts as instructions to the court as to what to do with your assets. That means your family is stuck dealing with the court after you are gone.
You need more than documentation
While these five documents are extremely important for all parents to have in place, it is not all that you have to do. Your family will not know what to do even if these documents are put in to place long before an emergency like a fatal car accident. Your family needs clear guidance that ensures they know what to do and whom to talk to when something happens. That guidance is simply not going to come from a set of cold documents. It’s going to come from a relationship with a trusted advisor who knows you, knows what’s important to you and is going to be able to guide your loved ones and make things as easy as possible for them during a trying time.
Your attorney can be your greatest counsel, support, and friend in preparing for a fatal car accident. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me.