What are College Age Essential Documents?

College is an exciting time of growth, learning, and new experiences for young adults. However, they are still adults, which means that unless they have a spouse, a person must designate who they want to allow to be informed of their medical status, handle their affairs and expenses, and make healthcare decisions for them ahead of time. Otherwise their loved ones may remain in the dark about their whereabouts in an emergency, expenses may become delinquent, and their doctors may have to make medical decisions for them. The suite of College Age Essential Documents, including a Durable Power of Attorney, HIPAA release form, and Advance Healthcare Directive, will give security and peace of mind to both parents and students as they begin this foundational experience.
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Durable Power of Attorney

Now that your child is a college student and over 18, or soon to be, what happens if something happens to them? You or a trusted individual can be their support when they establish an immediate or springing Durable Power of Attorney, allowing you to help them pay bills, manage their affairs, and take legal actions on their behalf.
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HIPAA Release

Every year, many college students make unexpected visits to the hospital. Even as a parent, you are not legally entitled to any of your adult child’s health care information without their express permission. This is where a HIPAA release comes in. A college age student should execute a HIPAA release to name who they would like to share privileged health information with in the event of their incapacity. Otherwise, medical staff cannot legally even share the student’s whereabouts in case of an emergency.
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Advance Healthcare Directive

An Advance Health Care Directive is a must for college students. While the HIPAA release allows for the release of privileged heath care information to named friends and family, the AHCD appoints a specific agent or agents who can make health care decisions for a person in the event they are unable to make those decisions for themselves. No one expects an accident or sudden illness, especially in young, healthy adults, but putting plans in place creates a safety net to increase the odds of a postitive outcome.
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