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Why unmarried couples need to think about estate planning

On Behalf of | Dec 19, 2019 | Estate Planning

Marriage is usually the next natural step for people who are in committed relationships, but it is not for everyone. There are actually many couples who choose to live and build lives with one another in Lake Charles without actually typing the know. While an unmarried couple may have created a successful life together, they might not realize just how difficult some things will be should either die without an estate plan.

Being married comes with certain benefits and rights, including certain legal protections regarding a spouse’s estate. Unmarried couples can secure many of those same rights with careful planning. Creating a will is a great example. Wills give people the ability to leave their possessions, financial accounts and more to heirs, so someone who is in a committed, nonmarital relationship could use a will to ensure that his or her partner is not cut out of the estate.

Another important marital right is the ability to make medical decisions for a spouse. There are many situations in which a patient might not be able to make those decisions for him or herself, and there is no guarantee that an unmarried partner will be allowed to do so. Creating a health care power of attorney makes it is easy to eliminate the risk of a partner being shut out of important medical information. This gives him or her the legal right to make decisions and to access necessary medical history.

Some couples in Lake Charles do not feel as if they need marriage to show their partners love and commitment, and this arrangement works perfectly well for many. However, it does overlook the spousal rights that come with marriage. For a committed unmarried couple, estate planning is a powerful and versatile that gives them the ability to give one another important legal benefits.