When it comes to hearing words like “wills“, “trusts”, and “estate planning”, many people think of older individuals and individuals with wealth. Those associations are misguided and it turns out that everyone can benefit from estate planning, even young people.

Young folks in Florida and elsewhere tend to have fewer assets because they are just getting started in life, but that does not mean that they cannot benefit from estate planning. If something occurs to a young adult that leaves the individual unable to handle her or his own financial or medical affairs, a parent or legal guardian will generally not be able to automatically step in to make those decisions. In order to make medical and financial decisions for an adult child without an estate plan, a parent would first need to gain authority through an inconvenient and costly court procedure. Fortunately, estate planning for younger individuals is relatively inexpensive.

Married couples without an estate plan can also find themselves in the same predicament from above without an estate plan. An estate planning tool called a valid power of attorney can be helpful in both situations. A valid power of attorney allows one individual to make legal decisions on another person’s behalf. A valid power of attorney generally covers issues like the management of finances and the authority to make health care decisions. Without a valid power of attorney, a spouse would have to gain authority from a court to make legal decisions on the behalf of their loved one.

Even though the misconception exists, young people and young couples can benefit from basic estate planning.