More and more people in the United States are childless. According to census data, in 2010 nearly 19% of women age 40 to 44 had not given birth, compared to 10% in 1980.
This raises an interesting question - who will take care of these individuals as they age? This article provides an interesting discussion on what childless individuals should do in order to ensure their needs are meet. Some helpful tips from the article:
1. Set up Powers of Attorney (Health & Financial). This will help ensure that people you trust will carry out your financial and medical (care, custody, and placement) wishes if you are unable to;
3. Set up a Will or Trust. This will ensure that your assets pass to individuals or charities that you want them to go to. If you don't have a Will or a Trust, you will die "intestate", which in short allows the legislature to decide which of your relatives gets your estate. If you don't want that cousin you don't like or don't know to receive your assets, make sure you set up a Will and/or a Trust;
4. Pick the right agents to be in control of your health care and finances. If your first choice is your sister who is 15 months older than you, you should appoint a back up who is younger in case something happens to your sister. Your agents should be people whom you trust and can keep updated if your wishes change.
If you or someone close to you is childless and in need of an Estate Plan, contact the experienced Michigan Estate Planning and Elder Law attorneys at Barsch & Joswick, PLLC today for a free consultation.