When most people think of estate planning, they think of what will happen after they are gone. Although planning for your legacy is important, it is also essential that you do not forget to plan for what will happen to you at the end of your life. If you become sick or badly hurt and can no longer act on your own, your autonomy could be lost and you could become reliant upon others.
Incapacity that leaves you at the mercy of your loved ones could happen not only at the end of your life, but also if you suffer an injury or illness at any time. Some people become temporarily incapacitated and later recover, while others will have illnesses or injuries that permanently alter their ability to act on their own.
Whatever your situation, you and your loved ones could be facing a dire state of affairs if something happens to you and you have no incapacity plan. You need to make plans for incapacity before a medical emergency happens and Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law can help to make that happen. Give us a call today to talk with our California incapacity planning lawyers for personalized advice and answers to questions including:
- Why is incapacity planning important?
- What needs to be a part of my incapacity plan?
- How can a California incapacity planning lawyer help me?
Why is Incapacity Planning Important?’
Incapacity planning is important to people both young and old because there is never a guarantee that you will be healthy tomorrow. Illness or injury could strike at any time, leaving you in a state where you are no longer able to maintain your autonomy.
If physical or mental illness prevent you from making decisions or expressing your wishes, someone must act for you. Provisions must be made for where and how you will live. Making an incapacity plan involves making plans in advance so there are no surprises and so you don’t end up in a situation that is wrong for you and hard for your family to cope with.
What Needs to be Part of Your Incapacity Plan?
Your incapacity plan needs to address:
- What kinds of medical care you want: Do you want to be resuscitated if you suffer a serious medical emergency and extraordinary measures are necessary? Do you want to be kept alive via a feeding tube or administered hydration through artificial means? These are just some of the questions that you need to answer in advance so you can determine when and how you want to die with dignity.
- Who will make your decisions on your behalf: If you are incapacitated, medical decisions may need to be made that you haven’t planned for in advance. Choices may need to be made on where you will live and what will happen to your property. You need to name a healthcare proxy and create a durable power of attorney to name an agent to act for you. If you don’t make a choice in advance on who makes decisions for you, your family will have to go to court and the judge will get to place your future in the hands of a person of the judge’s choosing.
- How you will pay for nursing home care if you are incapacitated and can no longer live independently: Paying for nursing home care often means spending a life savings if you haven’t planned ahead to ensure that costs can be covered.
You may also have other issues to address that are personal to you, like making a plan for who will care for your minor children or your pets in case you become incapacitated. Your plan must be designed with your goals and your life situation in mind. Let us help.
How can a California Incapacity Planning Lawyer Help You?
Litherland, Kennedy & Associates, APC, Attorneys at Law will work with you to make a comprehensive incapacity plan so you get to determine who makes your decisions, what care you will receive, and where you will live in case of incapacity. Your plan will focus on protecting your assets, prioritizing quality versus quantity of life, and maintaining as much autonomy as possible in the face of incapacity.
Our legal team will work with you to understand your goals and to use appropriate legal tools to ensure your wishes are respected and your family is spared tough choices. To find out more about how a San Jose Incapacity Planning Lawyer can help you, give us a call today at (408) 356-9200 or contact us online today.