Importance of Legal Documents for Adult Children

  November 25, 2014

By Chandler & Brown, LTD.


Its almost winter, and I am checking my wardrobe to see what still fits. (Its going to be expensive!)

Kids have gone away to college now but may be returning for Thanksgiving or other holidays. With that in mind, we recommend that you obtain a Power of Attorney for a college student. The Wall Street Journal October 18 reported "Under the 1974 Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, or Ferpa, professors cannot speak about the academic performance of any college student without the student's prior consent...(they) can't review test scores with moms and dads. It doesn't matter who pays the tuition."

Parents also cannot get involved with any other legal or financial issue regarding their child without that Power of Attorney.

Likewise, parents should have a Health Care Directive for their college child. Because of a federal law called HIPAA, a health care provider is prohibited from talking to parents about health care issues for an adult child. If a college student has health care issues or has an accident, that document could be essential in allowing parents to participate in health care decisions.

This advice also applies to any single adult child, even if that child is living with his or her parents.

Have a great Minnesota or Wisconsin winter.



The information presented here is general in nature and is not intended, nor should be construed, as legal advice.

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