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Estate planning and administration: the advance directive factor

As people age, they begin to think about various issues that perhaps did not occupy their thoughts as much when they were younger. For instance, older people tend to think about executing estate plans more often than younger people do, although the process is a valuable tool regardless of a person's current age. Also, whether a particular Illinois resident happens to be in excellent or failing health at a given time, an advance directive document can be useful in an estate planning and administration plan.

An advance directive allows an estate owner to address various medical or financial matters in his or her plan. Perhaps a particular person does not wish extraneous measures to be taken for resuscitation if his or her heart stops beating. Another person might want any and all available treatments used to sustain his or her life as long as possible in a code blue situation.

These and other issues, such as whether someone wants (or does not want) a feeding tube inserted if he or she can no longer eat or drink, can be incorporated into an advance directive plan. An advance directive may also include a power of attorney, giving another party or parties authority to make medical or financial decisions on behalf of an estate owner who can no longer make such decisions independently. Each estate owner can customize an advance direction to fit particular needs and long-term care planning goals.

An advance directive is one small part of the estate planning and administration process. Such documents are available but not required when executing an individual plan. An experienced Illinois estate planning attorney can help someone determine which types of documents would be best in a particular situation.

Source: webmd.com, "Advance Directive: What to Include-Topic Overview", Accessed on March 5, 2018

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