Eldercare Services and Legal Considerations
Legal matters are more important than ever if your loved one is reaching their final years of life.
No one likes thinking about or even talking about legal matters. Even lawyers are not partial to discussing legal matters that pertain to their family. However, if your loved one is a senior, particularly if they are in the final stages of their life, the organization is probably becoming critical. If you are starting to discuss eldercare services with your loved one, this is a good opportunity to bring up legal considerations as well.
Advanced Health Care Directives
One of the most important sets of documents for your loved one to take care of is setting their health care directives. For individuals in eldercare services, health care directives are incredibly important, but what are they? In sum, they are a set of documents outlining what level of medical intervention a senior should receive should they become unable to make that decision for themselves. This happens in the event of a serious illness or incapacitation. There are two forms of advanced health care directives: a living will and a durable power of attorney.
A living will should provide detailed instructions for the types of health care that should be provided and at what time. On the other hand, a durable power of attorney for health care should appoint someone your loved one trusts to made decisions on their behalf should they become incapacitated from doing so. It is highly recommended that your loved one should have both and they should discuss them with as many individuals as possible to make sure their wishes are followed.
Living Will vs Will
Wills are different from living wills. Whereas living wills set out directives for medical care should an individual become incapacitated, wills outline how an individual’s assets should be allocated in the event of their death. Both are incredibly important for your loved one to have. Wills are one of the least liked of legal considerations, but they can make a major difference in the lives of an individual’s loved ones who will not have to spend painful hours in courtrooms.
In case of emergency, your loved one should set aside the following documents and let people know where they are located: birth certificate, social Security records, health and life insurance information, including policy numbers, names and addresses of primary care physician and medical specialists as well as medical history, special arrangements made for health care, including advance directives, funeral prearrangements, Medicare documents, trust documents, living will, will, sources of income and assets, bank statements and safe deposit box locations, mortgage papers, investment records, negotiable securities, credit card information, most recent income tax return, loan papers, military discharge papers, marriage license, and divorce papers.
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