Aging and Estate Planning
Aging and Estate Planning
By Matthew A. Ferri, Esq. Aging affects us all. Working proactively with estate planning professionals can be beneficial to the elderly community. A common response from clients is that they want to be in control. As you age various factors can threaten your ability to maintain control. However, our planning focuses on these issues and helps you remain in control as you transition the various stages of your life.
For those of you who are getting older, a personalized plan enables you to keep control of your assets. By having a revocable trust created and transferring any assets to the trust that are permitted, it ensures limited external control. Only you as the trustee, and whoever you choose to be your successor, would have the ability to use the assets as spelled out by the terms of the trust. This leads to greater protection for the use of your money if you become disabled. It lets you spell out who inherits in the future and how they inherit. And finally, it makes the administration of your affairs easier after you die.
A Personalized Estate Plan
A personalized proactive plan would also help keep you in control of your healthcare decisions. By putting a power of attorney for healthcare in place, you are naming an agent you trust to make medical decisions for you if you cannot make them yourself. You can also make decisions in advance on certain topics like resuscitation, artificial nutrition, or mechanical respiration so your agent has guidance to follow. Similarly advanced directives enable you to spell out other care choices, so you are making your wishes known.
That way if anything happens or any deterioration occurs, you have thought about and possibly discussed with your healthcare agents what types of treatments you would like to receive for various conditions. You can explain if you want to remain home or what kinds of facilities you are willing to go into. As a result, your decisions are followed, and your loved ones have peace of mind they’re doing what you wanted.
Aging and Updating Your Estate
Additionally, working with professionals to create your personalized plan can have added benefits. For instance, we focus on making sure your plan stays up-to-date and works in the way you need it to. This not only includes updating documents for changes in the law and your life, but also looking at extra factors. Like if you and your loved ones should meet with our elder care coordinator to help you age in place for as long as possible. Or meet with our coordinator if you are in a nursing home and are questioning the adequacy of the care. Furthermore, this could mean our team helping you apply for Medicare if needed and ensuring you are receiving any benefits you are entitled to from the Social Security Administration, the Department of Veterans Affairs, or the like.
We have a process in place to make sure your plan works throughout your life to accomplish the goals you set out in your initial meetings with us. This helps keep you and your loved ones protected and keeps you in control for as long as possible.
For more information about aging and planning proactively, please contact our office at (248) 409-0256. We offer a complimentary initial consultation to learn more about our process.
Matthew A. Ferri, J.D., M.B.A., is the Founder and Principal of Life Focus Planning, a Michigan based estate planning law firm. He is an estate planning attorney with offices in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan and Shelby Township, Michigan.