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Peace-of-Mind Checklist

January 01, 2011

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Make sure you have implemented these important elements of a solid estate plan and understand all of your options.

A Will: A Map for Loved Ones to Follow
If you leave this world without a will, your assets will be distributed according to state law, and specific wishes such as naming a guardian for dependent children, choosing an executor or remembering Lewis & Clark will not be fulfilled. Likewise, having an outdated will risks voiding your current intentions. So, when change occurs in your life, remember to update your will.


Find out more about why you need a will in our free guide.

A Revocable Living Trust: Protect Your Financial Security and Privacy
A revocable trust agreement is simple and offers a way to manage your investments for your benefit during your lifetime and for your family?s benefit afterward. You transfer assets—usually cash and securities—to the trust, naming the trustee of your choice. (That trustee may even be you.) You’re the beneficiary of the trust during your lifetime. The trustee will manage the assets and pay to you the net income—or if you want additional funds, a portion or all of the principal.


After your lifetime, the trust becomes irrevocable. Your specified loved ones can receive lifetime income or principal from the trust, or you can have their share given to them in a lump sum, much like a regular will. When the trust terminates, the remaining assets are given to the beneficiaries you chose, often in the form of percentages. Should you choose to include Lewis & Clark in your trust as a beneficiary, we can use the percentage you designate to us for our important needs.

A Living Will: Ensure Your Health Care Wishes
A living will is a document that can direct your doctor to withhold or withdraw life-prolonging treatment if you are terminally ill and unable to communicate your wishes or permanently unconscious with no hope of recovery. It can tell your doctor to provide only those treatments that will relieve pain and provide comfort.

Power of Attorney: Your Financial Backup
A power of attorney is a legal document allowing another person or entity you choose (called your agent) to act on your behalf in terms of financial matters such as handling your finances and paying bills. With a power of attorney, you ensure that if you cannot take care of items yourself, your affairs will still be handled. In the document, you give your agent authority only for the types of transactions you desire.

To learn more about basis estate planning essentials as well as options for including Lewis & Clark� in your plans, contact Sharon Bosserman-Benson for the Undergraduate or the Graduate School at 503-768-7911, 800-753-9292, or, or the Law School development office at 503-768-6901 or


Find more information about estate planning essentials in our free guide.


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