Life is uncertain, and while it’s impossible to predict the future, it is possible for a Louisiana adult to take specific steps to protect interests and secure peace of mind. One way to do this is by having an estate plan in place, regardless of age, income and health status. Having even basic documents drafted and organized can provide security in case of an unexpected event.

One important step is to gather all documents and review them carefully. Life changes and certain events merit updates in existing plans, which is why it is prudent to review wills, trusts, powers of attorney and other documents every few years – or sooner as needed. Additionally, it is prudent to have these documents in place in case it is necessary to access them quickly in case of an emergency, evacuation or unexpected incapacitation.

Many in Louisiana also currently wonder what will happen if they are ever in a situation where they are unable to care for themselves or express wishes regarding health care. This is why it is important to have medical powers of attorney and living wills in place. They designate someone to act on behalf of an individual, and they can outline specific types of care someone does or does not want.

There are also documents that allow an individual to have control over his or her finances and assets. A will can outline the distribution of assets after death, and a trust can set aside assets for a specific purpose. These are only a few of the things someone can accomplish with a thoughtful and carefully considered estate plan.