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Thinking of assisted living? Hinsdale area professionals say you should start long-term care planning now to ensure your wishes are in place later, when you may need some support. No one wants to think about a time when they may not be able to make decisions for themselves, but long-term planning now ensures your wishes are in place later, when you need to make your preferences known. Figuring out options may be difficult, but Senior Living Experts can direct you to resources, providers, and care that makes long-term planning viable, and a lot easier than going it alone.

Thinking of assisted living? Hinsdale area professionals say you should start long-term care planning now:

All too often, seniors overlook long-term care and end-of-life planning which can cause great stress and havoc among survivors. Let your family know what to do if the time comes that you are unable to make your own decisions or convey your wishes. Leaving detailed instructions for family members is one way to ease the burdens of those surviving you.

Have an advanced directive

Advance directives are basically written directions and instructions that convey the individual’s preferences related to medical decision-making, in case the senior is unable to communicate their wishes at the time.  A living will is a type of advance directive that outlines and specifies the medical treatment that the senior prefers in the event they become incapacitated. This is also the time to designate someone else to have medical power of attorney, basically making the decisions on the senior’s behalf. Outlining your wishes in an advance directive, notarized and witnessed, will make difficult times a bit easier and without placing undue burdens and stress on those loved ones left behind.

Plan long-term or nursing care

It is estimated that 70% of the people in this country will require some sort of assisted-living or long-term care during their senior years. Make sure to clarify where you stand on such living situations and where you would like to go if you do need support and assistance later. Also, make sure to communicate a second viable option in the event your first-preference is unable to accommodate your needs at the time. Inform your partner, kids, and friends of where you will be most comfortable, should your needs require that you leave your current living situation.

Plan on some support

Think about how you will preserve the quality of life and maintain independence as you age; will you need extra support? Putting resources aside to cover senior assistance services can help seniors age gracefully and relieve them of burdens that can impact life quality. For instance, senior assistance services will run errands, pick up groceries, drive to appointments, and serve as social engagement- which is all beneficial to the autonomous senior.

Make end-of-life choices now

Though the topic makes many uncomfortable, there is no time like the present to share end-of-life wishes with your family and caregivers. Be cognizant of details, responsibilities, and choices, and document how you would want these addressed. Some end-of-life aspects to consider include:

  • Provision for any children, elderly parents, or disabled adult children.
  • Outline property that you want to be given to family, friends, and beneficiaries.
  • Make funeral arrangements and set up a prepaid funeral trust to cover costs of exactly what you want for your final wishes.
  • Donate money to charities and save on taxation.

There are many other areas to consider when making end-of-life choices now; make sure to consult with an experienced lawyer regarding estate planning issues and to notarize your legal documentation. Laws vary from state-to-state, so an attorney is in the best position to provide guidance on these matters.

Designate an executor

Avoid the hassle and expense of a court-appointed executor after you die by designating an executor of your choice now. The money that these executors cost comes out of your estate- and will ultimately cost your survivors in the long run! By contrast, naming a relative, friend, or neighbor is less costly but make sure that you are designating someone who is reliable, responsible, and willing to fulfill the role when you are deceased. States may assert requirements and restrictions related to executors, so familiarize yourself with the specifics for your jurisdiction. Typically, executors must be over the age of 18 and some regions prohibit felons from serving as executors. Your executor doesn’t necessarily have to live in the same state as you, either. Your estate or probate attorney will be able to provide more information related to these guidelines.Don’t put off planning for your future and the possibility that you may need a little extra support when you age. Senior Living Experts can point you - and your caregivers - in the right direction to find options, resources, and alternatives that come together to fulfill your long-term plans, wishes, and preferences.

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