Your son or daughter is headed off to college. You’ve packed the extra-long twin size sheets, the mini-fridge and the laundry bag (that will no doubt be returned to you overflowing). What else could your college-bound student possibly need?
These are the essential documents your adult child should have prepared and signed before leaving to college. *For the purposes of this article, it is assumed the adult child will choose their parent(s) as agent(s):
1. Advance Health Care Directive and HIPAA release. If your child is over the age of 18 it can be nearly impossible to obtain any information from healthcare professionals regarding your child’s care. There is nothing scarier than being thousands of miles away and receiving a telephone call that your child is being transported to a hospital. Without an advance health care directive and HIPAA release, this frightening scenario just became unmanageable and you will be left in the dark.
2. Durable Power of Attorney for Management of Assets. If your child is incapacitated, even temporarily, this document will authorize you to act on your child’s behalf. It may be used to speak to the financial aid office of a college or to access your child’s bank account(s). You may need this form to speak to a health insurer regarding billing and payment matters. It may also be used to assist you in dealing with your child’s landlord or auto insurer.
Those extra long twin sheets will certainly help your college student sleep better at night. Knowing they have proper planning will help you do the same.
For more information about Advance Health Care Directives, Durable Power of Attorneys or other estate planning documents; please schedule an appointment with a qualified estate planning attorney.