- Hi, my name is Steve Cortes and I am an attorney at the Cortes Law Firm. Today we're gonna talk about the documents you need when a child becomes a college student. Most parents don't think about this and they're surprised to learn that they no longer have access to healthcare information for their college student.
At 18 years old, your child is legally an adult. Parents can no longer make legal decisions for them. For a parent, their child will always be, well, their child. However, for a hospital or medical professional, they see them as an adult and they are prohibited from disclosing any healthcare information without the patient's consent.
So when couples visit us for their estate planning needs, we always ask them, how many kids do you have in college? Nowadays, with all the HIPAA regulations and lawsuits, it can be a very difficult process for a parent to get information about their adult child. Your college student needs a plan in place. So we recommend college students that are still dependent on their parents to have three documents, a healthcare power of attorney, a HIPAA authorization and a living will, in place. If they are already paying their own bills, then we also recommend a financial power of attorney that only becomes effective upon incapacitation.
This can become really important if your child has an accident or temporarily not able to make financial decisions. Someone still needs to pay the rent and utilities and a financial power of attorney can give parents the access that they might need to their bank accounts. Now, we always offer these four documents to parents, free of charge, who are also having us prepare their estate planning documents.
However, because how important these are, we offer any parent with a college student these documents at a substantial discount. So if your child is away at college, then they need protection and we are happy to help. Call us for a free consultation or, if you prefer, you're able to self-schedule an appointment using the link below. Thanks for watching and we'll see you next time.