Most people know that creating an estate plan that addresses what will happen to your assets, property, and minor children in the event that you die is very important. However, fewer people address the significance and importance of incapacity planning, despite the fact that incapacity planning is equally as critical. At the office of Patricia Bloom-Mcdonald, Attorney at Law, our incapacity planning lawyer can sit down with you to help you create a comprehensive blueprint for how to navigate the future.
What Is Incapacity Planning?
Incapacity planning is the process through which you, along with your lawyer and your family, will create a plan for what happens in the event that you become mentally or physically incapacitated, and you are no longer able to act autonomously to make decisions for yourself. Also called life-planning, incapacity planning allows you to put together a plan of action now, while you are of a sound mind, that addresses what will happen if you cannot make healthcare-related or financial decisions in the future.
What Types of Legal Documents Are Part of an Incapacity Plan?
You should consult with an attorney to determine which type of legal documents are important for your incapacity plan. That being said, some of the most common and most important incapacity planning documents include:
- Health Care Proxy with Advance directives. An advance directive is a legal document that allows you to write down your preferences and decisions regarding end-of-life care, including your preferences regarding resuscitation, feeding tubes, organ donation, dialysis, breathing machines, and other dramatic life-preservation methods. It allows you to assign a person whom you trust to make healthcare decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.
- Powers of attorney. A durable power of attorney allows you to assign a person whom you trust to make financial decisions on your behalf if you are unable to do so.
- Long-term care. One of the biggest elements of planning for incapacitation is planning for how to pay for the various services and care you may require. An attorney can guide you through the different benefits that may be available to help.
Why Is Incapacity Planning So Important?
Unlike estate planning, which is necessary because death is inevitable, incapacity planning means planning for something that may not necessarily happen. However, should you experience an accident, injury, or serious health conditions that leaves you unable to make decisions, knowing that you have a plan in place that is based on your preferences offers peace of mind, and can be a huge comfort to you. Knowing there is a plan in place can also be reassuring to your family members; making decisions on a loved one’s behalf without guidance can be stressful, emotional, and divisive.
Call a Massachusetts Elder Law and Estate Planning Lawyer Today
Creating an incapacity plan on your own isn’t advised – there are too many legal documents involved, as well as too much room for error. Instead, you should consult with an experienced incapacity planning lawyer in Massachusetts.
Patricia Bloom-McDonald, Attorney at Law, has more than 20 years of experience helping clients create estate plans, elder law plans, and incapacity plans. To schedule an initial no-cost, one hour consultation, please call Patricia Bloom-McDonald, Attorney at Law, directly or send a message today.