It’s still Elder Law month, so we are going to talk about another Elder Law related topic. Last week we talked about why you should consider a long-term care insurance policy sooner rather than later, because the earlier you address the need, the easier it is to meet it and pay for it. To close out Elder Law Month, this week, we will discuss the importance of getting help from an Elder Law Attorney, regardless of your age. It doesn’t surprise me that when people hear Elder Law, they immediately think of senior citizens. I get it, but the truth is, the name is a bit deceiving. While Elder Law Attorneys deal with issues that typically affect the elderly, Elder Law is not restricted to senior citizens! Call me biased, but I think everyone should see an Elder Law Attorney. Why, because traditional Estate Planning is designed to help you plan for the distribution of your assets after you die. However, we are all guaranteed to age. In fact, studies show that we are living longer. Unlike traditional Estate Planning, Elder Law is intended to help you preserve your income, wishes and assets, so that you can live your best life. That said, even if you are young, building a family, building a legacy, or still in the process of building your nest egg, if you are concerned about your family’s long-term goals and financial security, an Elder Law Attorney is a great place to start.
What exactly does an Elder Law Attorney Do? Well, we do more than just provide services to senior citizens. Elder Law Attorneys craft plans with your future needs in mind. Because we are aware of the complex issues you’ll be faced with as you age, we help you get your ducks in a row, so you can be prepared for them. Elder Law Attorneys can help with issues such as guardianship, asset protection, trust administration, disability, planning for a special needs loved one, planning for long-term care, VA benefits, and Medicaid.
Although these issues are seldom thought of when we are young or even middle aged, being proactive, and taking the necessary steps to map out long-term financial and retirement goals, to plan for future long-term care needs, plan to deal with the what if’s such as illnesses and injuries, and ensure our loved ones and children are secure, is the key personal autonomy.
No matter how old you are, planning for the unexpected is an absolute must! If you were to become incapacitated tomorrow, do you have an agent who could immediately step into your shoes and handle your business? What about your children, will they be financially stable if you aren’t able to provide for them? If you have a terminal illness or injury, and you reach a point where you require life sustaining treatment, would your family know your wishes? If you need long-term care, do you have the means to pay for it without depleting your assets? If you don’t wake up tomorrow, would your family know what to do with your assets and your children? As you have probably concluded, these issues are not triggered when you reach a certain age. You may not have to deal with most of them until you are elderly, but you absolutely should not wait until your reach that point to start planning. Elder Law Attorneys can help you plan for the unexpected so that you can have a simple and truly golden life as you age.