Josh and Debra also had to make arrangements since they had no children to manage their estate.

Without Children, Who Manages the Estate?

Josh and Debra saw how dementia had robbed Debra’s mother and Josh’s father of their faculties as they reached their late 80s, and the situation highlighted a particular -- and personal -- problem for the couple as they developed their own estate plan.

Josh and Debra had different considerations since they had no children to receive their estate.

Without Children, Who Receives the Estate?

Josh and Debra knew they had a lot in common when they met: love of travel and the finer things in life, ambition to distinguish themselves in their professional careers, and a desire to serve their community and those in need.

With so much to accomplish, Debra and Josh also knew when they married that having children probably wasn’t in the cards, particularly since they both traveled frequently for their jobs.

Under Michigan law, married individuals don't have automatic powers of attorney if their spouses are incapacitated.

Spouses Don’t Have Automatic Powers of Attorney

Charlie and Sonya thought they were doing well five years into their marriage in regards to their finances and future.

After their wedding, they opened a joint bank account that included automatic deposits of their paychecks, and they named each other as beneficiaries on life insurance policies and 401(k) retirement accounts. Charlie and Sonya also met with a local attorney to draft a Last Will and Testament, but they decided not to spend the money on powers of attorney due to their good health and relatively young age.

Parents can think ahead for their teenage children by using trusts.

Life Series Part III: Time to Start Thinking Long Term

Life for Sally and Harry starts to take a more established path after 8 years of marriage, now that they’ve just had their third child and Harry has moved up the ranks at work.