Estate planning is an important process for everyone. The documents we create through this process are often particularly important for the LGBTQ community, however, because many of us still lack some or all of the legal rights and protections automatically granted to legally-recognized family members under Federal law, as well as under the law that exists in many states. It may also be the case that you wish to protect and provide for your “logical” family in addition to, or instead of, your biological family. Finally, because the legal landscape for the LGBT community is changing so dramatically and so rapidly, it is critical that our estate planning documents are drafted with the right kind of flexibility so that they will continue to work for you even as the laws continue to change.
As a dedicated advocate and activist working to insure justice and full equality of the LGBTQ community, I understand that our families are structured in a variety of ways, and that we need to create specialized contractual protections for ourselves and our families. Having a revocable living trust or will and a Durable Power of Attorney for financial matters will allow you to decide who will manage your assets and provide for your care in the event of your incapacity, and who will benefit from your estate upon your death, irrespective of the legal status of a given relationship. If necessary, these documents can also be designed to facilitate tax-efficient wealth transfer during your life and at the time of your death. Similarly, by executing an Advance Health Care Directive, HIPAA Release, and Hospital Visitation Authorization, you can insure that only those people who you choose will have the authority to act as your health care advocate in the event that becomes necessary.
Please contact the Law Office of Naomi E. Metz to schedule a complimentary consultation to discuss your estate planning needs.