The Law Group of Northwest Arkansas (TLGNWA) is a highly experienced and skilled legal team providing a wide range of legal services for individuals, families, and businesses in Fayetteville, Arkansas, and the surrounding areas. To ensure its community is receiving the care and services it needs during the COVID-19 pandemic, TLGNWA is providing Free Estate Planning for Teachers throughout September 2020.
The COVID-19 Pandemic Continues
Arkansas had its first confirmed case of coronavirus on March 11, 2020, in Jefferson County. Within a week, 37 people had tested positive, and the next day, Gov. Hutchinson closed all public schools. Because the virus is highly contagious, it spread exponentially from person to person, impacting thousands of families across the state. As of August 26, 2020, there had been 58,023 confirmed positive test results, according to the Arkansas State Government.
Publics Schools to Reopen in the Fall
Though many in-person classes for public schools were canceled for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year, parents and teachers are now concerned about the coming Fall semester. Arkansas schools, including sports and other student activities, started August 24, a slight delay from the originally scheduled August 13 opening.
How schools handle the coronavirus will depend on guidelines and the spread of the virus in the surrounding area. Some schools have reopened and are working on enforcing best practices, like hand washing, physical distancing, masks, and routine disinfecting. While some schools are offering blended virtual and in-person options.
Gov. Hutchinson formed an advisory group to make recommendations on how to protect student athletes and staff when school sports get back to practice, though the governor says responsibility rests on the players’ and coaches’ shoulders to prevent the spread of the virus.
Brave Teachers Face Coronavirus Risk
Though minors have had lowers rates of infection than adults, it’s still possible for students to test positive and become ill or spread the virus to others, including teachers, staff members, bus drivers, parents, and other relatives. Teachers, in particular, face risk by working with dozens, if not hundreds, of students per day. They also face a risk of exposure in the classroom, halls, and other areas of their schools.
“Our Free Estate Planning for Teachers program is meant to help educators who are putting themselves at risk to ensure our children’s educations are disrupted as little as possible,” said Law Group Founder, Kristy Boehler. “This is an unprecedented crisis and our teachers are some of the many unsung heroes of this time, and we want to give back.”
Estate Planning for Teachers
In September 2020, TLGNWA is providing wills, powers of attorney, healthcare proxies, and other crucial estate planning tools for Arkansas teachers. All adults, especially parents, should have planning documents in place regarding their healthcare and families. Powers of attorney and healthcare proxies ensure a loved one can make medical, financial, and other practical decisions for someone unable to do so for themselves. While a will lets people tell their families what they want, from care of minor children to how to pass on assets. Though individuals might have had conversations with their spouses, children, and other loved ones, these documents turn their wishes into official and enforceable matters. Such planning also has the significant benefit of helping surviving relatives avoid a lengthy or confusing probate process.
“Although it is not a topic everyone is comfortable discussing, everyone should prepare, nonetheless,” Jason Boyeskie said. “Everyone, including teachers, should make sure their affairs are in order. We want to help teachers take this one thing off of their plates.”
Teachers Can Contact Us for Free Estate Planning Services
“Teachers are often the first to reach into their own pockets to make sure their students have everything from books to tissues, and we know they’ll do the same when it comes to masks, soap, hand sanitizer, and other cleaning supplies this upcoming year,” said K.C. Tucker, “As lawyers, we aren’t able to produce masks or hand sanitizers, but we can offer these specific legal services free of charge.”