Comprehensive Estate Planning for the
When it comes to inheritance, distribution of property and personal effects, medical, financial, and burial decisions, no one who is not your legal spouse or blood relative has any rights to act on your behalf. Gay marriages and civil unions are not currently recognized in Texas. Therefore, it is essential for the Texas LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) community to have comprehensive and thorough planning that is tailored to protect themselves and their families.
Planning Considerations for LGBT Families
Will those who know you best have the power to make decisions if something happened to you?
Same-sex couples can do essentially all of the same planning as legally married couples to
ensure that their relationships are recognized by the law. The difference comes
in the consequences of not having any planning.
Without proper planning...
Will my life-partner be the one authorized by the court to handle the distribution of my money and property when I pass away?
Will my same-sex partner inherit any of my property or belongings, including the house we both live in and furnishings we both share?
Will my partner have the authority to make funeral and burial decisions for me?
Will my partner be appointed guardian of my children?
Will my partner be able to make medical decisions for me if I am unable?
Will my partner be able to pay my bills and handle my finances for me?
Will my partner be appointed my guardian if I ever suffer from a condition where I am rendered incompetent or incapacitated?
The answer to all of these questions is... NO!
No LGBT couple should be without the following legal documents:
- Last Will & Testament
- Directive to Physicians (Living Will)
- Medical Power of Attorney
- HIPAA Release Authority
- Statutory Durable Power of Attorney (for financial matters)
- Appointment of Agent for Funeral and Burial Arrangements
- Declaration of Guardian in Event of Later Incapacity
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