Planning for Incapacity
We believe that an important aspect of estate planning is planning for the possibility of incapacity. Incapacity can occur as a result of physical disability due to a severe injury or illness. It can also occur as a result of mental disability, most often related to a brain injury, dementia, or Alzheimer's Disease. Proper planning, including having the appropriate documentation in place to appoint another person to have financial management powers and medical decision making powers, can avoid the need for court intervention in the appointment of a conservator. Specifically tailored advanced directives can ensure that each individual's health care wishes are addressed and clearly stated, to avoid contest or uncertainty. Drafting power of attorney forms for these purposes are among the standard services we provide to our estate planning clients.
Proper planning for incapacity can also avoid the loss of property and financial assets acquired during a person's lifetime in the event of the need for long term care. Our attorneys are prepared to discuss with our clients the rules governing qualification for public benefits and how those rules may impact their assets.
There are many legal issues which acutely effect people as they age, including long term health care, public benefits, retirement benefits, investments, in home caregiver regulations, insurance (including life, health and long term care), avoiding or dealing with scams directed toward the elderly, and avoiding undue influence. We frequently advise and assist clients effected by these issue. Although we do not sell insurance or investments, we work closely with our clients' other professional advisers to ensure that our clients have comprehensive plans to address their future needs. We do not promote particular assisted living or long term care facilities or plans. However our attorneys have experience with local care and long term facilities and local placement agencies, and can assist families and clients with the transition process when the need arises for increased assistance and care.