Planning for the future is critical for people in good health, but it is just as important for those in poor health — such as those battling cancer. Unfortunately, many people in Florida, no matter their medical situations, still have not engaged in estate planning. Here is a look at what a well-thought-out estate plan entails in the Sunshine State.

Estate planning involves creating a detailed plan that spells out how people want their estates handled if they end up being incapacitated or dying. These estates include assets, real estate and pensions. A basic component of an estate plan is a will that specifies what should happen to a person’s property down the road.

Other important parts of an estate plan include a medical power of attorney and an advance directive to a doctor. These documents appoint a trustworthy person to speak on a patient’s behalf if the patient cannot speak for himself or herself, even if his or her incapacitation is temporary. The trusted person can relay to medical staff the patient’s desires when it comes to medical treatment and care.

With proper estate planning, people can feel in control of their assets, making sure that the property they have worked so hard to accumulate does not end up in unintended hands. They can also feel that their wishes will be honored when they confront an illness that is life threatening. An estate planning attorney can help with the process of developing an estate plan that accurately reflects one’s needs, wishes and best interests in Florida.