For young adults, turning 18 means freedom and independence.
For their parents, it should mean health care powers of attorney.
A health care power of attorney gives a third person (here, usually a parent) the authority to act for the signer if the signer cannot act for himself.
Young adults are notorious for accidental injuries. Without a health care power of attorney, you may not be informed of your child’s accident or other health care issue. Even if you are, you may have no say in your child’s treatment.
This is particularly frightening for parents with children away at college.
For an 18th birthday present, your child may be nagging you for that car he covets or that vacation she “must have.”
Good luck with those.
Whatever else you give your child, give him or her an extra, very special gift – have your child properly execute an appropriate health care power of attorney.
Then, have your child keep the document with him or her. And keep a copy for yourself in a secure place.
It’s cheaper than a car or fancy vacation, and priceless for your peace of mind.