The essential checklist for getting your affairs in order


As you age and your circumstances change, there are certain items that should be addressed.

First: Update your Last Will & Testament, Durable Financial Power of Attorney, Health Care Power of Attorney, and Living Will.  Specific language should be added to these documents to prepare for long term care issues and provide for your dependents and/or pets.

Second: Arrange your funeral. Selecting these arrangements removes the burden from your family. Provide documents for your cemetery plot. You could even go so far as to prepare your obituary and pick out your outfit. Provide a sheet with vital statistics information (such as birth date; birthplace; social security number; mother’s name prior to first marriage; father’s name; occupation and kind of business/industry; highest level of education; veteran status).

Third: Compile a list of your assets, expenses and other important information. Specifically address the following: online accounts and anything that is automatically debited or deposited from your accounts; usernames and passwords and update when appropriate; subscriptions (such as Amazon, Netflix, etc.); social media accounts including usernames and passwords.

Fourth: Inform individuals in charge. Make sure that your Executor, Trustee, and Agent know where your legal documents are kept and have access to the list you compiled of your assets and expenses. Do not keep your original Will in a safe deposit box because your Executor will have trouble accessing it after you pass away. Provide a copy of your Health Care Power of Attorney/Living Will to all medical providers. Provide a copy of your Durable Financial Power of Attorney to your financial institutions.

Fifth: Talk to your loved ones and do not procrastinate!

If you would like assistance with your checklist, contact Walters & Galloway, PLLC at (717) 697-4700 for a free consultation.  Jessica F. Greene, CELA,* LL.M. in Elder Law,*certified as an Elder Law Attorney by the National Elder Law Foundation as authorized by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Visit