The little things we do for our family
members – whether for our parents, children or siblings – are usually done
naturally, with little forethought or pre-planning. Mom calls and asks for a
ride to the grocery store. You swing by and pick her up. Dad needs help
cleaning the gutters, you promise to drop by on Saturday morning with a ladder
and a pair of gloves. This is the ebb-and-flow of daily life within a family,
and we seldom think anything of it. But this kind of easy-going assistance
should not lull you into a false sense of security, or complacency. Should any
of our family members become incapable of making their personal, financial or
health care decisions, we cannot so easily just step in and help.
I came across an excellent article online
this week that explains why “medical
decision documents, wills and powers of attorney should be in place for anyone
over age 18, especially seniors.” As an estimated 78.2 million baby boomers turn
65 next year, the need for long-term care planning, and particularly medical
decision documents, increases with them.
are the types of fundamental
estate planning strategies that nearly every family should have in
place. If you need help starting these
conversations with your own family members, consider sharing our website with them, or subscribe to our
e-newsletter and forward a copy to them.