In the realm of financial planning, one cannot underscore the importance of estate planning and elder law. While many see Wisconsin estate planning as a mere method of allocating assets after one’s passing, it is, in fact, a comprehensive tool to ensure financial health and security throughout one’s life and beyond.

The importance of a durable power of attorney cannot be understated.  A crucial component of any Wisconsin estate plan is the establishment of a Wisconsin durable power of attorney. This legal instrument allows an individual, known as the principal, to appoint someone they trust, referred to as the agent or attorney-in-fact, to manage their financial and other affairs in the event they become incapacitated. Without this in place, families might face legal obstacles in trying to manage or access the incapacitated person’s assets, leading to possible financial hardships.

The need for a Wisconsin durable power of attorney becomes even more pronounced when we consider the unpredictability of life. For instance, health complications might arise suddenly, making it challenging for someone to manage their own finances. By having a durable power of attorney in place, you can ensure that someone you trust has the authority to make decisions on your behalf, safeguarding your financial health.

An integral part of financial health is understanding and monitoring one’s credit status. Recent changes in the offering of credit reports make this task easier than ever. As Consumer Reports recently shared, the three primary credit bureaus, namely Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion, have agreed to provide free, weekly online credit reports via This is a significant shift from the past, where only one free report from each bureau was available annually, barring Equifax, which provided six due to a data breach. 

With this change, individuals now have the chance to order three online credit reports every week at no extra cost. This continuous access enables people to keep a close eye on their financial health, identifying any discrepancies or potential issues in real-time.

As reported by Consumer Reports, this move is set to revolutionize how people manage their finances. By having the ability to access credit reports frequently, individuals can ensure they are not victims of identity theft, fraudulent activities, or any errors that might affect their credit score. 

As we tell each of our clients, Wisconsin estate planning is not just about deciding asset distribution but also about ensuring that you remain financially secure and in control throughout your life. By creating a durable power of attorney as a part of your comprehensive Wisconsin estate plan and regularly monitoring your credit reports, you can maintain a strong financial position, ensuring peace of mind for yourself and your loved ones. 

We know this article raises more questions than it answers.  As an estate planning and elder law firm, we urge our clients to take advantage of these tools and resources, ensuring comprehensive financial health and security. We want to help you protect your aging relatives. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting with attorney Alan Hougum today.