Some Florida Estate Planning Lawyers are now providing documents for college age kids as part of their parents estate planning.
A valid Health Care Proxy or Designation of Health Care Surrogate, or Medical Power of Attorney and a Durable Power of Attorney are important documents to have for your adult children.
With recent HIPAA regulation and privacy laws, spouses can not find out medical information on each other, much less on their adult children. If you child is hurt, incapacitated, or unable to speak for themselves, a Florida Durable Power of Attorney or Florida Designation of Health Care Surrogate can allow you to act and make decisions on the behalf of your adult children. It is important to include HIPAA releases in these documents so that you can receive the background medical documents necessary to make decisions.
Remember, that your “child,” is an adult and their Privacy is protected under the law, once he or she turns 18. Under HIPAA, the medical community treats him or her as completely separate and distinct from you, and owes your “child” full confidentiality. There are circumstances when a medical provider may slip up and allow a parent or friend more information than they are suppose to, but without the proper documents they are not suppose to discuss the care and treatment of your child with anyone, including a parent.
To make sure you are prepared in case a medical emergency arises, you should talk with your Florida Estate Planning Attorney. Make sure that if you have a durable power of attorney it is valid, in the last few years there have been many problems with them, so it needs to mention the Florida Statute it that its authority comes from. If there your documents are more than 3 years old, you should have them reviewed for compliance with the new regulations.