Financial Planning Tip of the Week/”College Bound Checklist”: By Jennifer R. Figurelli, CTFA

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Is your child heading for college this fall?

Help protect their health and finances from uncertainty and risk!

For families who are about to send a child off to college, it is important to review the legal issues that affect 18 to 21-year-olds.   Why?   Because in the eyes of law, once your child turns 18, you no longer have the same access to your child’s medical and financial information.  Nor do you have the authority to make health or financial decisions for your child.   For example:  If your child runs into money issues, or is unable to resolve a credit card problem, without a durable power of attorney in place, the banks and financial institutions will be unable to assist you.   If your child incurs medical problems that make him or her unable to make his/her own health care decisions, without a health care directive, the physician will be unable to disclose any medical information about your child.

Please talk to your child about this.  Before he/she heads off to college, encourage him/her to meet with a qualified estate planning attorney to have these documents in place.  Hopefully, you won’t ever have to use them, but by preparing for the unexpected, you will alleviate a lot of stress and worry by planning ahead of time.

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