When a person gives another a great deal of power in their lives, it is good to have checks and balances built in to protect the individual's interests. This rule of thumb was dramatically illustrated in a recent case where a caregiver was accused of embezzling more than $150,000 from the patient she assisted. While the details of law from California to Maryland may vary, the priorities of relatives who want to protect their vulnerable family members are similar. Although the resulting crime was unfortunate, the family acted as a check and balance, protecting the patient from more losses due to the alleged abuse of a power of attorney.
At this time of year, many in Maryland and elsewhere consider gifts to give their families. For some, this means a trip to the local mall. For others, it means a review of an estate plan to ensure that it adequately reflects the wishes of the individual. This review includes all documents, including a last will and testament will, trust and other estate planning tools.
The end of the year is a time that many Maryland residents take to reflect upon the events and choices made during the past year, and focus on plans for the coming one. Many estate planning experts suggest that this time of year is ideal for reviewing one's plan, or for beginning the estate planning process. An annual check of these vital documents ensures that the stipulations within are still aligned with the wishes and intent of the principal. One recent report also suggests that many may want to consider adding power of attorney (POA) documents, if they are not already in place.
Young families or parents with young children in Maryland likely want to ensure that their children are well cared for in the event of their incapacitation or untimely death. Though the topic is likely not the most popular, it may be one of the most important for young families. Aside from a standard will, there are several things that parents can do to ensure the safety and security of their children and assets.