If you haven’t done your estate planning (which includes legal documents that allow someone to handle your affairs in the event of an emergency) don’t panic; however, now is a really good time to get them done.
We talk about remote options and some of your most common concerns during the coronavirus pandemic.
:40 We’re getting a ton of calls about what can people do if they kept putting off writing their wills and other documents. What you can do to get prepared in a hurry.
2:30 Planning in advance is far less expensive overall than trying to manage affairs in a crisis, and it’s much easier on your loved ones.
3:20 Legal services and firms are still an essential business, and we’re all still open to help you.
4:45 Krystal explains that before this crisis, they didn’t usually do remote meetings. However, everyone is adapting, and there are ways to get an estate plan done without being physically present.
6:15 Florida’s remote notarization laws. They weren’t supposed to go into place for wills and trusts until July. Florida still requires two witnesses, and Florida has no provision currently for remote witnesses.
8:00 Colorado allows remote notarization due to an emergency directive.
10:00 What happens if you don’t have any legal documents and you end up in the hospital?
10:45 Health care surrogate and living will documents. Most hospitals will provide a health care surrogate and living will form…which isn’t ideal, but they are better than nothing.
12:00 A Do Not Resuscitate order or DNR – hospitals provide this, not lawyers. This ONLY addresses if the heart stops. What’s the difference between a DNR and a POLST?
13:12 A case example: an older woman changed her Living Will to explain that she did not want a respirator/ventilator if they were in short supply. Merrell argues that this would have been better placed in the Healthcare Surrogate form.
14:45 Capacity: If you can communicate, we never get to these documents. But they are a good place to inform everyone of your boundaries and wishes.
16:00 Because of Coronavirus, if your loved one goes to the hospital, you may not be able to go with them. So, you may be someone’s health care surrogate, but the hospital may have the right to refuse you; doctors may communicate by phone.
17:00 Merrell discusses the right to make funeral arrangements and how important it is to include this in an estate plan. Krystal explains what this form looks like in Colorado.
20:30 Hospitals CANNOT provide the essentials: Durable Power of Attorney and others. Good attorneys are out there to help you now.