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What Will You Do When?

We see the need for Pivot Planning all the time. Mom or Dad is enjoying their retirement and things are well with the family. Then one of them suffers an unexpected health event. Everyone is caught off guard and no one knows what to do. But since there is a need to act quickly, sometimes the family is forced into making a rash choice. This choice may be good or it may be bad. A quick decision had to be made and sometimes that decision was driven by emotion.

None of us has a crystal ball so none of us know what will happen in the future. Many of life’s happenings could not have been predicted. However, with some situations, you sometimes have a good idea that the thing that actually happened may eventually happen.

For example, maybe your Mom has become increasingly unsteady on her feet. Something in the back of your mind may have told you that there was a good chance that she could fall and break a hip or otherwise injure herself. This is your clue to start your Pivot Planning process now.

It’s this advance planning for likely future scenarios that we refer to as a Pivot Plan. What will you do if and when something happens?

Pivot Planning Tips

When doing Pivot Planning, think about what is the most likely thing that could happen – then develop a plan around that. If Mom is unsteady on her feet, what would happen if she did fall and break a hip? Where would she go? Could she stay at home with assistance? Are enough family members available to provide needed care? If not, does she have money to pay for outside caregivers? If she has little money, is it possible that she would qualify for government assistance to help pay for in home care?

Facility Options

It’s also good to check out local facilities in advance of the need. When Covid lets up a bit more, it would be good to schedule a tour of Independent Living, Assisted Living and Skilled Nursing Homes in your area. Look to see what services they provide and the cost of care.

Proactive Planning

One thing that you may be able to do is to take action to reduce the probability of something bad happening in the first place. In the above example, would it be possible to remove some trip hazards from Mom’s house; or (2) install some rails or grab bars in the bathroom; or (3) talk to her doctor for a recent medical evaluation.

By taking the Proactive Planning Steps mentioned above AND establishing your Pivot Planning as to what you would do if something bad happened to a declining parent, you will be in a better position to make educated as opposed to emotional decisions if and when something bad does happen.

If you are providing care to a cognitively declining senior, you have our respect. Please seek out assistance rather than trying to do it all yourself. This approach may not be best for you or for the one you love.

Best wishes to you and your family as you work to do the necessary planning for your family.

Your Next Step

I implore you to talk to your family members about creating an estate plan and a healthcare plan. At the next family gathering, you can share your concern and the proactive steps that you are taking to prepare yourself. Contact your local Elder Law Attorney right away

You have probably already taken several steps to make the life of your Loved One better. Hopefully you have picked up a tip or two from this article to help even more. However, we can’t stress enough how important it is to plan. Let this story, albeit fictional, encourage you to read our FREE eBook as you get a jumpstart on your (or Mom’s) financial planning. We hope to hear from you, allowing us to help you avoid costly estate planning mistakes!

Arkansas Newsletter

If you, or someone you know, are from Arkansas and would benefit from more information like this, be sure to sign up for our free Arkansas Newsletter by going to https://elp.legal/arknews.

ELP YouTube Channel

Speaking of trends, subscribe to our YouTube Channel. We have a few hundred videos there for your watching enjoyment (We even have a video discussing pivot planning). Our videos are categorized by playlist. You should easily be able to find several videos that discuss exactly what you are looking for. The best part about this is not only is this some really good content, but it is free! There’s even a video specifically about a Revocable Living Trust!

Just click here to go to The Elder Law Practice You Tube Channel. Please remember to subscribe! When you click the notification bell, so you will be notified of our latest video launches. If you have video ideas, please type them in the comment box. Thanks for watching!


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. Please don’t attempt DIY Estate Planning 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.