The Key is to create a Flexible Plan
We can eat right, exercise, see our doctor regularly and generally try to take care of ourselves. Other than that, we often have little control over life-changing health events like Alzheimer’s or dementia. We hope we are not stricken by a life altering disease like Alzheimer’s, but many of us are. We need to hope for the best, but be willing to be flexible as we plan for the worst.
The Alzheimer’s Association states that currently 6 million Americans are living with Alzheimer’s. Horrifyingly, the number is expected to more than double in the next few years. That means that any of us stand a good chance of falling victim to this dread disease.
Alzheimer’s may or may not be avoidable. However, we can most certainly create a plan that will help us get the care we want and need. A proper plan will give our family direction in the event that the worst happens. A plan can provide a lot of stability for us. It’s the only way to ensure that we get the care we need and want. A proper yet flexible plan can reduce the sometimes overwhelming stress that is thrust upon a family when Alzheimer’s strikes a beloved parent or spouse.
It doesn’t happen by accident!
While no plan can ensure that you will never go to a Nursing Home in the future, a plan can be set into motion to allow you to stay at home longer should you become incapacitated. Additionally many decisions can be made such as:
- Where you would want to receive your care.
- How this care would be funded (private or government assistance).
- Who would be authorized to make decisions on your behalf.
- When you would receive what kind of care (mile-markers).
- What type of care you would want (private or facility care).
Additionally a plan can be established to provide care for an at-home spouse or other family member. This element is (unfortunately) often overlooked. If all of the money is spent down providing care for the incapacitated spouse, then the spouse at home may be left destitute. However, the “well spouse” (Medicaid term) is often not so “well” themselves. They may not require care in a skilled nursing facility, but may need non-medical care at home which is usually paid out of pocket.
Therefore, it’s very important to establish a flexible plan where all of these things are considered and a plan is devised to account for as many contingencies as possible. A key point is to create a plan. Since it’s impossible to know what will happen in the future, it’s very important to create a plan that can change as your situation changes.
Various types of trusts are often used in this type of planning process, along with other legal documents. It is important in this type of planning to coordinate legal planning and financial planning. For best results, your attorney and your financial advisor need to work together to help you get the results that you want with your plan.
Involve your Family
It’s also important that (where possible) you involve your whole family in the planning process so that everyone is one the same page as to what you would want if and when you become incapacitated. At this meeting you can also discuss how you would want your assets to be utilized for your care and how you would want assets distributed at your death.
Open communication = fewer unpleasant future surprises
By utilizing our Help Momma Method™ planning process, we can help Arkansas residents with the creation of their Staying Out of Nursing Home Plans and can help you involve your whole family in the process.
We work with people to do various types of estate planning. There is no one size fits all plan and no plan is categorically better than others. The key is to meet with your attorney (hopefully us!) to discuss your unique situation and have a plan crafted that is best for you. If we can help you to craft a solid but flexible plan, click the button below to set your FREE phone consultation appointment
We have covered some legal topics in this edition and as always, I want to emphasize that (1) the law is different in every state, so if you live in a state other than Arkansas, just know that the law may be totally different in your state; (2) your situation is unique, so one size doesn’t fit all – meaning what we discuss herein may not be right for you; (3) we have purposely over-simplified many of the topics above (otherwise this would be many pages long and unreadable because of all of the legalize). It is imperative that you meet with your attorney (hopefully us!) and get a plan that will work for you. Don’t try to plan based on what you read in this (or any) article AND don’t try to go it alone. Please consider this, get your questions answered and take action.
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Without a properly flexible plan, how will you care for your Loved One, be there for your family, get work done, and pivot in the event of a crisis? What about cost? How will you pay for it all? If you make the Assisted Living Facility choice, how long will the money last? Together we can craft a proactive plan and get you started protecting your assets!
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