Doctors still do not have a complete understanding of many diseases and conditions that lead to mental impairment. Until these situations are preventable or completely treatable, it makes sense to include the possibility in your estate planning documents.
If you think of estate plans is only providing for your family after you were gone, there is more to them than you might expect. Many people in Massachusetts use various estate planning tools to make sure that their wishes are carried out throughout your life and into posterity. This includes the possibility of degenerative mental conditions, such as Alzheimer’s disease. Please read on for a brief overview of topics in this area.
From a legal perspective, preparing for Alzheimer’s usually starts with naming people to act on your behalf. Unfortunately, it is not often as easy as saying that a wife or a child has the power. There are options, such as healthcare powers of attorney, that you may want to consider to formalize the arrangement and protect your rights.
You may also use powers of attorney for your finances and property. As explained by the Alzheimer’s Association, these documents could allow people to make decisions about your investments on your behalf. It is important to limit the scope of these documents so that you retain the control you want for as long as you want it.
Closely related to finances, you may want to speak to an attorney about how you might manage the expense of any long-term care situation. If you do not meet certain criteria, such as income limits for government benefits, then there could be options to restructure your retirement assets or income in such a way that you increase your funding assistance options.
Every family feels the impact of conditions such as Alzheimer’s differently. Your estate plan should address your specific concerns, and make sure that you deserve the best possible life for yourself and for your loved ones. Therefore, please do not use this article as legal advice. It is only general information.