When you plan your estate, you make preparations for the things that will take place after you pass away. This is an important part of the equation, but you should also address end-of-life issues when you are devising your plan.
Many elders become incapacitated late in their lives. Some people become unable to communicate due to physical conditions, and this is one type of incapacitation.
Mental incapacitation is another looming threat. There are various different causes of mental incapacitation, but Alzheimer’s disease alone is enough to make incapacity planning a must.
The United States Census Bureau has found that the oldest segment of the population is growing faster than any other. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, approximately 45 percent of people who are at least 85 are suffering from the disease.
Alzheimer’s causes dementia, and people with dementia are typically going to become unable to make sound decisions on their own.
Preventing a Guardianship
The state could ultimately appoint a guardian to act on your behalf if you do nothing to prepare for incapacitation. This is not a very appealing prospect to many people, but you can prevent a guardianship if you take the right steps in advance.
Your incapacity plan could include the execution of a durable financial power of attorney. With this document, you name someone to handle your financial affairs in the event of your incapacitation.
You could also name a health care decision-maker through the execution of a health care proxy. This is an advance directive for health care.
Another advance directive that should be included within your incapacity plan is a living will. This type of will is used to record your wishes with regard to the utilization of life-sustaining measures.
When you have these documents in place, your own wishes will be honored, and representatives of your own choosing will be standing at the ready to act on your behalf if it ever becomes necessary.
Incapacity Planning Consultation
If you are ready to take action, contact us through this page to set up a consultation: Westchester NY Incapacity Planning Attorneys.