Elder Law – Do I need legal documents for each state I live in?

Q. If a retiree lives in the South Carolina but spends winters in Florida, or lives half the year with a son in Delaware and the other with a daughter in Maine, does she need different advance directives or other legal documents for use in each state?

A. According to Craig Reaves, a former president of the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys: “No matter how many houses you have or visit, there’s one place that’s your legal residence or domicile. It’s not a function of how much time you spend in each location. Where do you register to vote? Which state issued your driver’s license? What address do you list on your tax returns? That’s your legal home.”

As a rule of thumb, living in more than one state won’t affect a will or living trust. Those are tied to the stat that’s your legal residence; you don’t need more than one.

For questions about your estate planning, legal documents or power of attorney, contact us today. We have a network of professionals that are ready to help you or your loved one.

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