Estate Planning

Special Note: Know that ALL attorneys  are not created equal— do your “HOMEWORK”  check out their expertise and verified credentials.

The Caregiver’s Companion Caring for Your Loved One Medically, Financially and Emotionally While Caring for Yourself | Harlequin Publishing

♦ Chapter 9: Crucial Legal Conversations

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

Often elderly people have difficulty describing what they want to occur at the end of their life. Th e subject is an uncomfortable one. It can stir up fearsome images and feelings of grief. Nonetheless, one of the most important things we can do for those we love who are advancing in years or are terminally ill is to initiate conversations with them to help them clarify their wishes and make formal decisions for the management of their personal care and their financial affairs. Remember to be gentle, respectful and helpful, rather than pushy, when initiating these conversations. After talking matters over with your loved one and giving him or her a chance to reflect, ensure that your loved one’s decisions regarding the management of his or her end-of-life care and financial affairs is set down on paper, in signed legal documents.

These documents will protect your loved one and your family and will ensure that his or her personal choices are honored by doctors, hospitals, family members and the courts. They will prevent lawsuits, and heartache and tragedy, the byproducts of conflict at the end of life and following death.

Have the crucial legal conversations now. Do the paperwork, and then you, your loved one and your family members can go back to….read more


These questions are basic, but knowing the answers to them is important as you proceed on your caregiver journey.

What is an elder law attorney?

An elder law attorney is equipped to confront the complex legal issues that the elderly face. An elder law attorney can help you with anything from drafting a will, creating and administering a trust, and planning or administering an estate to obtaining Medicaid long-term care coverage and veterans benefits, and much more.

How can an individual ensure that his or her end-of-life wishes and final wishes are carried out? These objectives can be achieved through careful planning. At minimum, one should have the following:


  • Durable Health Care Power of Attorney (Health Care Proxy)
  • Durable Financial Power of Attorney
  • Advance Medical Directive (Living Will)
  • Last Will and Testament
  • Revocable Living Trusts
  • Th ose with large, complex estates will require additional estate
  • planning:


  • Irrevocable Living Trusts
  • Life Insurance Trusts
  • Family Limited Partnerships
  • Qualifi ed Personal Residence Trusts
  • Dynasty Trusts
  • Gift Programs
  • Retirement Trusts 


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