DEAR HARRY: I would like to get my affairs in order so my son will have fewer problems when I pass on. I have a will that leaves everything to him. I am now 62, divorced, with the one son who is totally independent. I have a modest estate, which consists mostly of a home worth about $200,000. The rest is in an IRA rollover and a small checking account. Is there anything else I should do?
WHAT HARRY SAYS: Does your son have a durable general power of attorney? This would enable him to act for you financially in case you are unable to do so. Your bank may want its own form of the power. Your son should also have a medical power of attorney so he can act for you if you're unable to act for yourself in deciding on medical care. In that connection, you should have a living will, giving specific instructions on whether you want to have "heroic measures" used in case of a serious medical situation with questionable results. A copy of this should go to your primary-care physician. Review your will to make sure you have named the best executor and successor executor. You also should make sure you have successor beneficiaries to succeed your son in case he does not survive you. Virtually any noncriminal lawyer should be able to help you.