The Coronavirus pandemic has forced families to think about topics they might generally avoid; serious illness and death. Because the virus doesn’t always present symptoms in the early stages, those who are struck with a severe form often do not have time to prepare their business and legal affairs before requiring medical intervention. What can you do now to ensure that your legal and financial matters are in order? Below are some recommendations on what you or your loved one can do to keep your home and business running smoothly in case you are hospitalized or otherwise unable to act on your own:
1. Review your Health Care Power of Attorney (HCPOA). This document allows someone to make your health care decisions in the event you are unable to. You may name one or more individuals whom you trust to act as your agent(s). We recommend that you name at least one alternate agent, should your first agent be unable or unavailable to make decisions on your behalf. If you become mentally competent and able to communicate with your doctor, the authority of your HCPOA agent ceases.
2. Review your General Durable Power of Attorney (GDPOA). This document is often referred to as a business or financial power of attorney. Your agent can pay your bills, file your taxes, and conduct your ordinary business affairs. Similar to the HCPOA, you may name one or more individuals whom you trust to act as your agent(s). Again, we recommend that you name at least one alternate agent, should your first agent be unable or unavailable to make decisions on your behalf.
It is easy to become fearful and focused on the unknowns surrounding the Coronavirus 19 pandemic. Rather than dwell on the negatives, we suggest you look for ways you can help your community during this time. Here are 10 ways you can have a positive impact locally:
1. Practice social distancing and sanitation measures as recommended by the CDC and insist all members of your family do the same.
2. Call your elderly neighbors weekly and ask how they are feeling. Have a real conversation with them; ask about their family, their hobbies, etc. Do they need any groceries or medicine that you could pick up and deliver to their doorstep for them? Make sure they jot down your telephone number to use if they are concerned or just need to hear a friendly voice.
3. Turn off the television and phones and take your family outdoors. Write encouraging messages and pictures on your driveway and sidewalks with sidewalk chalk for passing neighbors to see.
4. If your community has been ordered to shelter in place, send a generous tip to the professional who does your hair, nails, lashes, massage, etc. The majority of these individuals are self-employed and will be out of income during a quarantine, with no unemployment benefits available. A gesture of good will on your part could help them weather this storm.
5. Purchase gift cards from your favorite restaurant, bar, movie theater, etc. to use after social distancing recommendations have been rescinded. Consider sending gift cards for grocery stores to individuals you know who are no longer employed due to this pandemic. Most of these gift cards can be purchased online or by calling the business, using your credit card for payment, and having the cards mailed to you.
Davis & McCann P. A. has named Mary Beth Helfrich, as their new marketing director. Helfrich brings over 20 years of legal experience to the position as well as multiple years in advertising, marketing and education.
Helfrich will be responsible for all forms of traditional and digital communication for the firm, as well as coordinating educational conferences and speaking engagements. Helfrich is a graduate of St. Mary of the Plains College with a B.A. in journalism (minor in Business Administration), as well as Ft. Hays State University with a B. A. in elementary education.
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