While everyone wants to believe that the future holds only good things, sadly a medical emergency could strike at any time. You could be left incapacitated, unable to care for yourself, and unable to make decisions on your own future.
If you find yourself incapacitated, both you and your loved ones will be far better off if you have made an incapacity plan in advance. If you have an incapacity plan in place, you can maintain a degree of autonomy and your family can avoid court action and stressful choices.
Kuhn & Kuhn is here to help with the creation of this plan. You should give us a call today to find out about how we can help you to make a personalized incapacity plan and to get answers to questions you have about the incapacity planning process including:
- When should you make an incapacity plan?
- What should be part of your incapacity plan?
- How can a Charleston incapacity planning lawyer help you?
When Should You Make an Incapacity Plan?
It is important to make an incapacity plan while you are healthy and while you are able to put a plan in place. There is no guarantee that you won’t be struck by illness or incapacitating injury at any time. If something happens to you before you have put plans in place, it will be too late for you to take control over your destiny in case of serious illness or injury.
If you have no incapacity plan in place, your loved ones may need to go to court to have a guardian or conservator named to make decisions for you and manage your assets on your behalf. During this delay before a guardian or conservator is named, the value of your assets could decline if you have wealth that needs hands-on management. There could also be uncertainty over who makes decisions on your medical care when you no longer can.
Without an incapacity plan in place, your family business could suffer if you are a company owner because there will be no succession plan in place. Your loved ones could end up fighting over what you would have wanted, and there could be court costs as your family disputes who could be in charge.
You could end up with someone you wouldn’t have preferred managing your assets, making your decisions, and consenting to care on your behalf. You could receive care you don’t want or be denied care you do want, and the decisions made about your assets and living conditions could be decisions you would never have wanted made.
You could also lose the chance to leave your legacy if your incapacitating injury or illness leaves you alive but unable to care for yourself, necessitating a move to a costly nursing home.
What Should Be Part of Your Incapacity Plan?
Kuhn & Kuhn can work with you to make an incapacity plan that is right for your situation. The tools you need to use to prepare for incapacity will vary depending upon your specific situation. For example, if you own a company, a business succession plan could be one of the centerpieces of your incapacity plan.
For almost anyone making an incapacity plan, however, some of the key tools to use include:
- Trusts to protect assets in case you need Medicaid to pay for costly nursing home. Trusts can also allow you to take control over who manages assets in case of incapacity.
- A durable power of attorney. This can allow you to name a trusted person to make decisions and manage asserts on your behalf if something happens to you.
- A living will to ensure you specify what kinds of medical care you wish to receive and wish to decline.
You may also want to make a nursing home plan to ensure that you have control over where you get care if something happens to you. There are many different steps to the incapacity planning process and Kuhn & Kuhn will help you to choose the steps that are right for you.
How can a Charleston Incapacity Planning Lawyer Help You?
At Kuhn & Kuhn, we understand how stressful it is to think about suffering an incapacitating illness or injury. We make it as easy as possible to put protections in place for yourself and your loved ones in case this happens to you. Give us a call at 843-577-3700 or contact us online today to find out more about how we can help.