Estate planning is important to everyone. You do not need to own a big house or have hundreds of thousands of dollars in the bank to plan an estate. No matter how much or how little you own, everyone can follow the same essential steps to estate planning.

If you are to die without a will, Texas statutes will determine how all your assets will be divided. So the first step to planning an estate is the preparation of a will. It can be done on your own, but it is not recommended since a will of that kind may not hold up in court.

The next step to follow is the Texas durable power of attorney. This allows you to appoint someone to manage your assets in the event that you can no longer manage them yourself. If your physical health or mental well-being is deteriorating, there is a pressing need to have someone you trust handling your finances. If there is no durable power of attorney, the court will order the guardianship and decide who handles your affairs.

The third step is similar in that it also involves the power of attorney but from a medical standpoint. The Texas medical power of attorney is a document that permits you to choose someone to make medical decisions on your behalf.

The next step is place to further protect people in a medical setting. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, also known as HIPPA, sets limitations on exactly who can view your medical records. Gaining a HIPPA authorization lets you name a person who can access your medical records and enable them to share information with health care providers.

The last step is to create a living will, which is also referred to as the Texas Directive to Physicians. This document clarifies your instructions to physicians when it comes to the use of artificial methods that will keep you alive should you experience a terminal condition.

Each step was created to make sure your life unfolds to your exact wishes. Estate planning is a careful process that can be made easier with the help of the professionals at Hixson Law Firm. Our probate attorneys are available to assist people young and old in Arlington, Grand Prairie, Mansfield and other neighboring communities.