Do young adults need estate planning documents? Estate planning documents include essential items such as living trusts, living wills and last wills and testaments.  These can be an important part of helping families prepare for multiple, challenging scenarios when a loved one passes away or becomes incapacitated. With the complexities of modern life, estate planning has become increasingly important and not just for older individuals.

Parents of younger adults should consider a variety of tools that enable the parents to maintain decision-making power in certain situations. There are many reasons this can be beneficial.  For example, for a student headed off to college a parent might wish to keep a health care power of attorney on hand for his or her adult child should critical decisions need to be made on the child’s behalf in the event of injury or illness.

The Tools a Young Adult Might Need

When a child reaches the age of 18 in Arizona, he or she becomes an adult in the eyes of the law. There are several estate planning tools that can help address some of the common issues faced by younger adults and their parents.   Even if a young adult has few assets to leave to loved ones, he or she should at least prepare a living will, healthcare durable power of attorney and financial power of attorney.

Financial Power of Attorney

A financial power of attorney allows you to appoint someone you trust like another family member to make financial decisions for you. This can be activated if you become unable to make these decisions on your own or it can be structured so that the document is active as soon as it’s signed. A durable power of attorney may be used by an 18-year-old, for example, to give his or her parent the opportunity to reach banking or other assets or deal with creditors.

Living Will

A healthcare directive or a living will outlines your specific medical wishes if you are unable to communicate your wishes on your own. One of the most important issues addressed in this scenario is artificial life support, for example.

Healthcare Power of Attorney

It is important to grant someone else the opportunity to make decisions on your behalf whether you are 25 or 75. This individual may be called upon to make important decisions for you during challenging and emotional situations. Younger individuals can benefit from putting together these documents so as to avoid confusion down the road.

This blog should be used for informational purposes only. It does not create an attorney-client relationship with any reader and should not be construed as legal advice. If you need legal advice regardingDo Young Adults Need Estate Planning Documents?, or any other estate planning matters, please feel free to contact Stephen L. West at 480.461.5341, or Curtis M. Chipman at 480.461.5329. You can also log on to,  or contact an attorney in your area. Udall Shumway PLC is located in Mesa, Arizona and is a full service law firm. We assist Individuals, families, businesses, schools and municipalities in Mesa and the Phoenix/East Valley.