Planning for incapacity is an important step to take in the estate planning process. Incapacity planning involves the use of several different documents that estate planners and their families should be familiar with.

Estate planning includes a set of documents that can help the estate planner dispose of their assets, care for their loved ones and plan for incapacity. Because no two estate plans are the same, estate planning tools provide flexibility so estate planners can create an estate plan to meet their unique estate planning needs.

To help estate planners plan for incapacity that prevents them from managing their own financial affairs, a durable power of attorney can help by designating a trusted individual to manage their financial affairs while they are incapacitated.

Likewise, a durable power of attorney for healthcare, along with an advance healthcare directive can help the estate planner provide guidelines for what they would like loved ones to do for them should they become incapacitated and unable to direct their own medical care and treatment. An advance healthcare directive can specify the types of medical care and treatment the estate planner wishes to receive or medical care and treatment they do not want to receive. It can address their wishes for resuscitation and other end of life considerations. A power of attorney for healthcare can name a trusted individual to direct the estate planner’s medical care, including any medical care and health needs that may not be addressed in the advance healthcare directive.

It is important to plan for incapacity should the day come to pass. As a result, an estate planner should be familiar with the latest estate planning tools that can help them do that.