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Planning an estate in Delaware

Many Delaware residents assume that an estate plan only deals with determining who will get a person's property after the death of the owner. While both trusts and wills do handle these issues, a complete estate plan will also deal with how the individual will be taken care of medically and who is able to make important choices about their finances and medical care.

A will allows the testator to choose an executor who will administer, a guardian that will care for minor children and how property should be distributed after death. Trusts give people more leeway with how their assets are handled when they die, and they also enable individuals to continue to manage these assets while they are still alive.

Powers of attorney are also an important part of an estate plan. These documents give a selected individual the right to make decisions in someone's stead, and they are normally used to handle financial matters or to determine what type of medical care someone should receive if they cannot make the choice. Many people also prepare a do not resuscitate order if they do not wish to receive life-saving medical treatment after they stop breathing.

Comprehensive estate plans can ensure that property goes to the people that the owners want in the manner they wish, and they can also allow individuals to determine whom will make important medical and financial choices for them. It is important that estate plans are current and follow state and federal laws for them to be effective. A lawyer who has experience with these matters can be of assistance in preparing and updating the component documents.

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