Do You Have a Plan For the Future?

Have you given any thought to your wishes regarding….

  • What health care services you would choose to receive if you became incapacitated?
  • What life-support means to you?
  • What kind of medical treatment you would want if you were close to death?
  • What kind of medical treatment you would want if you were in a coma and not expected to wake up?
  • What kind of medical treatment you would want if you sustained permanent, severe brain damage and were not expected to recovery?
  • Who would make these decisions for you in the event that you could not?

If you were close to death:

  • How comfortable do you want to be?
  • How do you want people to treat you?
  • What do you want your loved ones to know?

If not, know you are not alone. A 2014 study by the American Journal of Preventive Medicine found that nearly 2/3rd of Americans did not any form of advanced directive. In other words, only 26% of Americans did have advanced directives in place. In addition, it is important to note that at the time of death, only half of us are able to make our own decisions.

An advanced directive is a legal document that states your medical wishes in the event you are unable to express them and includes a living will and power of attorney for healthcare.    An alternative advanced directive is the “Five Wishes” document which is legal in a majority of states and can be found at this link: https://www.agingwithdignity.org/five-wishes.

Advanced Directives Work

Completing and advanced directive is only the first step in getting your affairs in order. Please do take the time to visit this link: https://www.nia.nih.gov/health/getting-your-affairs-order. It does an excellent job of helping you “Plan for the Future”.

Truly there is no greater gift a family can receive than that of having your life and death wishes clearly outlined and your personal affairs in order.

This is not about dying, but living the life you wish to live.

Julie

One thought on “

  1. In addition to your suggestions (from a broader perspective) one might include an overall review of one’s estate plan — the following are some further thoughts for you to consider:

    1. a review of an estate plan, if you have one, every two to three years or whenever a life-altering event occurs

    2. review of beneficiary designations for life insurance policies and retirement

    3. an awareness of the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 – whereby a decedent’s estate surviving spouse would be able to utilize the unused portion of the decedent’s estate tax exemption

    4. children need powers of attorney, especially for financial and health care powers of attorney

    5. outdated estate planning documents – older estate planning documents may have required mandatory funding of a tax-sheltered trust upon the death of the first spouse, why may no longer be appropriate given the current estate tax laws and your net worth

    6. specialized planning – each family has its own unique situation that may require specialized estate planning, such as a blended family.

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