Summer is finally here, and warm weather usually means travel. But travel, while fun and exciting, can also mean accidents, illness and unexpected conditions.
As you make plans this summer to visit family, go to the beach or take that special trip, please take a moment to review your important legal documents. Just as you make sure that someone gets your mail, waters the plants or takes care of your pets while you’re gone, it is essential you take a moment to ensure that your estate planning documents are up to date and still reflect your wishes.
During this review of your wills, trusts, guardianship and care of minor children, pay particular attention to your healthcare directives—i.e., your living will and healthcare power of attorney. These documents are for medical emergencies. Have you provided healthcare directives for your children in these documents?
The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) protects the privacy of a patient’s healthcare information. You should have a separate, signed HIPAA authorization to allow persons of your choice to have access to medical records if someone needs to get information on your medical status.
Did you know there is a way to protect you and your family by registering your healthcare directives with DocuBank? DocuBank is a healthcare directive registry that allows you to get an emergency card providing immediate access to your healthcare directives and emergency information. This card will protect you at any hospital or clinic, whether local or abroad. Anywhere there is an internet connection or a fax machine, they can deliver your vital information promptly to the medical personnel who need it.
Isn’t your and your family’s health and well-being as important as seeing that your pets are taken care of or that your newspaper is stopped? We hope that you enjoy the warm weather and your summer plans! PM