Your mom wants to age at home, and it seems like a reasonable choice at this point. What steps should she be taking to protect herself if something happens in the future? This is one of the reasons it’s so important to talk to an attorney experienced in elder law. These are the questions to ask.
Is Long-Term Care Planning Worthwhile?
Changes to your mom’s health are one discussion to have. See if the attorney has any experience in long-term care planning. What happens if she learns she has heart disease five years from now? Does she have the money for the care she’d need?
Years from now, she may need the help of caregivers to help her with instrumental activities of daily living if she’s going to remain in her home. An attorney in elder law can help you better understand ways to make long-term care possible.
Does My Mom Need a Will?
An attorney can help you understand if your mom needs a will or not. If she doesn’t have any assets, a will may not be necessary, but most people should have a will in place to help with financial planning. It can help ensure assets are split in the manner she wants. Plus, it helps avoid disputes.
When Should People Fill Out Advance Directives?
Does your mom have an advance directive? How about a living will? If not, she needs to make those arrangements ASAP. This crucial legal form tells doctors the type of care your mom would want in different situations if she cannot speak for herself due to an illness or accident.
Would she want a feeding tube or to be kept on life support? Does she have any religious objections to experimental drugs or procedures? All of this is important for a doctor to know when it comes to treatment plans.
What Is the Importance of Powers of Attorney?
Powers of attorney are legal decisions that name an agent as your mom’s spokesperson if she’s unable to make decisions for herself. There are medical powers of attorney and financial ones.
Suppose she has a stroke and is unconscious. In that case, her agent can listen to the medical team and decide if she should have surgery, be treated for aspiration pneumonia, or move to hospice if there’s no hope for recovery.
Financial powers of attorney work the same way. Your mom chooses a person to make financial decisions for her if she’s unable.
Are You Familiar With Medicaid Planning?
The final question to ask an elder law attorney is if they’re qualified in Medicaid planning. If there is a chance your mom will run out of money if she develops a chronic health condition, it’s essential to work with an expert in Medicaid.
Medicaid applications are complex and require careful consideration of spending. The five-year look-back can penalize your mom if she’s been generously giving her family members gifts to buy a house, car, etc. With the help of an expert in elder law and Medicaid planning, she can avoid frustration.
If you or a loved one need assistance with Elder Law in Trussville, AL contact The Alabama Elder Care Law Firm, LLC today. (205) 390-0101