Updated: April 30, 2020 07:25 PM
Created: April 30, 2020 07:18 PM
A growing number of Minnesotans are preparing their wills due to concerns over COVID-19.
The Twin Cities Estate Planning Council said it's seeing up to a 50% increase as people want to get their affairs in order, just in case. The estate planning website Gentreo says it's seen an increase of 223% in the last two months.
"I've noticed an increase from younger parents, especially with minor children wanting to do some planning, wanting to ask what happens to my kids if both of us were to die," said Lucas Spaeth, an attorney with Volunteers of America Minnesota and Wisconsin.
Spaeth said he's even gotten calls from people who are hospitalized. Because visitors aren't allowed, it's become nearly impossible to get important documents signed at the last minute, so Spaeth recommends thinking about these things in advance.
"We recommend everybody over the age of 18 have a health care directive and a power of attorney because anybody can lose their own decision-making capacity and you want to have trusted people on your side helping you out," Spaeth said.
He advises people to put things in writing, such as who will be your medical decision-maker, who would become your kids' guardian and any specific wishes for who gets your house or belongings.
"If you haven't planned, we apply the default, which says spouse, then kids, then parents, then siblings," said Spaeth.
"We're still required to get in-person signings with two witnesses, we don't do e-signings of wills and other legal documents," he added.
However, they can make some arrangements, as they recently had a driveway will signing, Spaeth said.
Copyright 2020 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company