The COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic has brought much of the country (and the world) to a halt. In an effort to control the spread of the virus, Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff extended the County’s Stay Home, Work Safe measures until at least April 30th. The Texas Department of State Health Services is closely monitoring the outbreak and encourages strong social distancing and sanitizing measures.
There is no question that the spread of COVID-19 has created an enormous amount of fear and uncertainty. It is both a public health and economic crisis that is hitting the individuals and families in Texas hard. During these difficult times, it is prudent to make sure that you have a comprehensive, up-to-date estate plan in place.
An Estate Plan Provides Protection in Uncertain Times
The coronavirus outbreak serves as a reminder that life is unpredictable—and that it is always in your best interest to be prepared. The pandemic is far from the first time that a disaster has hit communities in Texas, and, sadly, it will not be the last.
Estate planning professionals generally recommend that you review your plan after important life events—marriage, the birth of a child, illness/disability, etc. An international health crisis, particularly one that has created immense financial uncertainty, may be the right time to take a look at your estate planning documents. Careful planning offers a tangible sense of peace and security.
The Elements an Effective Estate Plan
Regardless of your age, family structure, or financial status, you can benefit from an estate plan that is custom tailored to protect your unique interests. Contrary to what some people think, estate planning does not have to be complicated. Our San Antonio, TX estate planning attorneys can help you set up a comprehensive plan that is designed to protect health, finances, and family. Four foundational elements of an estate plan are as follows:
- Will: A will is the basis of most estate plans. Among other things, a will can be used to appoint an administrator, leave assets, and make funeral & burial arrangements. With a professionally drafted will in place, you can leave clear instructions for your loved one—thereby dramatically reducing the risk of conflict or dispute. You are never too young to draft a will. It is a legal document that can be easily modified to adjust for life’s ever changing circumstances. If you have questions about creating or amending a will in Texas, we are more than happy to help.
- Trusts: For some families, a trust is a more efficient and cost effective way to leave property and assets to beneficiaries than a will. There are many different types of trust—from living trusts to Special Needs Trusts (SNT). While not everyone needs to set up a trust, it might be the best estate planning tool to protect your loved ones.
- Powers of Attorney: Unfortunately, the COVID-19 outbreak reminds us that anyone can fall seriously ill. In the unfortunate event that you are temporarily or permanently incapacitated, it is crucial that your loved ones have the legal tools that they need to manage your affairs and protect your interests. We recommend that all adults have powers of attorney in place.
- Health Care Directives: Finally, some people want to ensure that they have control over their own health care decisions—no matter what might happen. If you have specific instructions for your own care, especially for end-of-life care, it is highly recommended that you create a legally binding health care directive. By doing so, you can ensure that your wishes are known and respected.
We Can Work With You Remotely During the Coronavirus Outbreak
For many years, we have worked diligently to help people achieve security through estate planning. During the COVID-19 pandemic, our law firm is still fully operational. To protect the health and safety of you, your family, and our staff members, we are prepared to assist and serve clients remotely until social distancing is no longer required. If you have questions or concerns about your estate plan or estate planning in general, please feel free to give us a call or to send us a message. We are here to get you answers.
Call Our San Antonio, TX Estate Planning Attorney for Help
At Weisinger Law Firm, PLLC, our Texas estate planning lawyers are compassionate, diligent advocates for clients. Our mission is to help you and your loved ones find peace and stability through careful planning. To schedule a completely confidential initial consultation, please contact our law firm today. With an office in Selma, we serve individuals and families throughout the region, including in San Antonio, New Braunfels, Garden Ridge, Schertz, Alamo Height, and beyond.