Estate Planning For The Living
Estate planning is not only about designating where your assets will go after your life is over. It is also about putting plans in place to protect your interests if you become incapacitated and cannot make decisions for yourself at crucial times.
Besides durable powers of attorney for the management of your material possessions when you are unable to speak for yourself, you can have a strong influence on your future health care needs through the creation of lifetime directives.
Sound Medicaid planning is another type of estate planning applicable during your lifetime. With Medicaid planning, you can address future financial and health care needs simultaneously. The attorneys at Hayes Copenhaver Crider Harvey can help ensure that your estate plan includes documents and strategies that can make a great difference if Medicaid becomes necessary.
What Types Of Medical Care Will You Accept Or Reject When You Cannot Speak For Yourself?
Several types of lifetime directives include the following:
- Living wills
- Advance directives
- Durable powers of attorney for health care
Documents such as these allow you to assert your desires for health care in times of incapacity. For example: Would you want a feeding tube? A blood transfusion? If so, under what circumstances? If not, who is authorized to ask medical providers not to intervene in your body’s natural processes in such ways? Your lifetime directive can spell out your wishes to prevent disputes between family members or between family members and doctors.
What If You Need Medicaid? How Can You Get Ready For That Possibility?
If you or a loved one spends time in a nursing home or at home with 24-hour care for an extended time, you will likely be looking at Medicaid as a possible source of help. Even if you have long-term care insurance and/or savings set aside for end-of-life care, government assistance may still be necessary.
You may want to include Medicaid planning in your overall estate plan. Or you may have reason to believe that you or a family member is likely to need Medicaid assistance in the coming months or years. An attorney can help you discover the right solutions.
At Hayes Copenhaver Crider Harvey, we advise clients on the most efficient, common-sense ways to plan ahead for potential Medicaid needs. Methods for increasing your chances of qualifying for Medicaid may include gifting, asset transfers, creation of trusts, documentation of health status and application of healthy spouse protections.