Parents – Do you have a child turning 18?

When a child turns 18 years old, parents no longer have certain inherent rights related to medical and financial details about their adult child. For this reason, there are three simple – yet important- legal documents (I am not a lawyer and am not providing legal advice) needed to ensure parents can intervene on behalf of their adult child in the event their child is injured, becomes ill or is otherwise incapacitated. The three critical legal documents every parent should get in place are:

1. HIPAA Authorization Form (for Authority to Speak with Healthcare Providers) – HIPAA, or the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996, safeguards who can access an adult’s private health data. If a parent calls or visits the hospital to inquire about their adult child’s health, healthcare providers are prohibited by law from revealing health information to them – or anybody else – about their child. A HIPAA authorization, signed by the adult child and naming the parent as an authorized recipient, gives the parent the ability to ask for and receive information from healthcare providers about their child’s health status, progress, and treatment.

2. Healthcare Power of Attorney (for Medical Decisions) – If an adult child signs a Healthcare Power of Attorney naming their parent as their “medical agent,” the parent will have the ability to view their child’s medical records and make informed medical decisions on their behalf.

3. General Durable Power of Attorney (for Financial Decisions) – If an adult child were ever incapacitated, parents would benefit greatly from having a General Durable Power of Attorney in place, where they were named as the “agent” authorized to make financial decisions on their behalf. Sites such as Mama Bear Legal Forms and LegalZoom can be used to create these documents or contact your Estate Attorney. When the documents have been downloaded and printed, they will need to be signed and notarized. Antonio Mobile Notary Services makes this easy – we will come to you at your ideal time.