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Estate Planning Series: For College-Bound Young Adults

As young adults embark on their journey into college or the workforce, they’re stepping into a new chapter filled with change and excitement. There’s a lot of planning required before students pack up their rooms and head off to school, but should estate planning be one of the things on the to-do list? According to Brandon J. Campbell, a Law Partner at Opfer | Campbell | Beck P.C., the answer is yes!

For the second installment of this series, Campbell sheds light on the importance of estate planning for young adults. 

But Young Adults Don’t Have Assets?
For some, it might seem pointless for a college-bound adult to estate plan because of their lack of assets, but Campbell argues that the most important asset is the individual. 

“No matter how ‘simple’ your life might be, you need someone who can make decisions if you have an accident. You need someone who can make sure your taxes are filed, your bills are paid, and your insurance is up to date if you cannot,” Campbell says. 

It can be overwhelming to send a student off to college, and talking about the what-ifs can be a dark and gloomy conversation. Yet, this will give parents and students peace of mind just in case.

Why Can’t I Access My Child’s Records?
Campbell also encourages young adults and their parents to begin this process because once a child turns 18, access changes. Someone who is 18 is considered an independent, autonomous legal entity, and parents will no longer have access to their child’s information. 

“I cannot walk into my parent’s bank and ask about their accounts, so the same principle applies with our adult children,” Campbell says. “The shock parents often have with adult children is when there is an accident or other issues, they discover the school, bank, insurance company, doctor cannot legally tell them anything without a valid Power of Attorney or court order.”

By planning ahead, college students and parents can avoid the headaches and obstacles that might arise in an emergency.

What Does This Process Look Like?
The good news is that estate planning for young adults will be easier because they have few assets and no family of their own. 

To make this process easier, Campbell’s office offers a $375 document package. This package provides young adults and their parents with Powers of Attorney, HIPAA Authorization, a Living Will, and a simple Will. 

If you have questions about where to start with estate planning or want to know how to make this process easier, check out the first installment here.

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