If you have aging parents or if your family has a history of Alzheimer’s or Dementia, the time is NOW to talk to your loved ones about drafting specific instructions about how they want to be cared for in the event that long term care is needed.
There are many mechanisms for protecting your family members and their assets from the debilitating effects of mental illness or disability, but these safeguards have to be in place before they lose competence. In the state of Ohio, a person must be over the age of 18 and must be deemed competent to create a Trust, a Will, sign a Power of Attorney for Finances or Healthcare or make any legal decisions for themselves. Incompetence is defined in the Ohio Revised Code section 2111.01(D) as:
” … the person is incapable of taking proper care of the person’s self or property or fails to provide for the person’s family or other persons for whom the person is charged by law to provide; means that they know who their family is, and the nature of their estate and that they are able to make decisions for their best interest.”
In addition to creating basic planning documents, your loved ones can actually nominate a person to act as the guardian of their person and estate in the event that they are incompetent or disabled to the point where they cannot care for themselves. Whomever they nominate should be trustworthy and care about them and their wellbeing as they are literally trusting them with their life.
Another mechanism to prepare for the possibility of needing long term care is to purchase Long Term Care insurance from a reputable financial planner who can incorporate it into a larger financial plan for your loved one’s wellbeing. Again, the sooner the better to look into these policies as eligibility and premium cost will be effected by the current mental and physical health of the person needing coverage.
Even if you or a loved one doesn’t have a debilitating disease or illness, if you fail to plan, you are planning to fail. At the Law Firm of Doty and Obenour LLC we are able to sit down with you face to face and discuss your concerns about the future and help make a plan that will give you and your loved ones the priceless gift of peace of mind. Contact us for a free consultation to get your questions answered: 614-678-8848.