Legal Planning for College Students

Recently, there have been a number of high profile cases in the news about young adults being injured or killed due to accidents occurring on or near college campuses.  Hopefully your children can learn lessons from these terrible situations and act responsibly this fall.  These cases also provide practical lessons for parents to learn as well.  

All of your child’s life you’ve been their legal guardian.  You’ve made financial decisions for them and have been their medical decision maker.  Now, however, your child is 18 (at least).  They have reached the age of legal majority.  

If they were in an accident now, you are no longer their legal guardian.  This means that you may very well need to go to court to be named as their guardian in order to make future financial and health care decisions for them.  This is a process to be avoided.

It is usually my recommendation that college students should consider signing a Power of Attorney authorizing their parents to act on their behalf.  Then, in the event of an accident, their parents can step into their shoes to make any legal, financial or medical decisions, without the need to go to court.

An additional benefit of having a Power of Attorney is that these documents can allow a very convenient means for you to support your children.  Perhaps there will be reason for you to conduct banking transactions on their behalf (“Dad, can you please deposit $100 in my account”).   Perhaps you may need to deal with insurance companies, utility companies, or the college itself.  

The Power of Attorney can authorize all these actions so that you can continue to be the supporting parent you have always been.  

Schedule your appointment today before the Back-To-School excitement invades your calendar.