Who Needs Incapacity Planning and What Is It?

Everyone needs Incapacity Planning! Incapacity Planning is the process of planning for the unfortunate circumstance of becoming unable to control your finances or health decisions. While no one hopes to ever become incapacitated, as we grow older dementia and Alzheimer’s disease become more likely to affect us. According to the World Health Organization, 47.5 million people suffer from dementia and 7.7 million new cases of dementia are recorded each year. Furthermore, with the increasing uncertainty in today's society, incapacity planning helps avoid the risk of the courts interfering and acting inconsistently with your intended desires.

Here is a brief overview of seven helpful Incapacity-Planning tools:

  1. A Durable Power of Attorney allows you to designate an agent who will have control over your financial matters in the event that you become incapacitated. You can designate one or multiple agents to be your attorney-in-fact. It is important to choose someone you trust as this person will make financial decisions on your behalf.
  2. A Health Care Surrogate is a person who makes health care decisions for you in the event that you cannot make them yourself. If you do not designate a health care surrogate, the court can appoint one for you. Designating a Health Care Surrogate can avoid the loss of time it takes the court to appoint a guardian and can help avoid the possibility of unwanted persons making medical decisions on your behalf.
  3. AHIPAA Release is a document that allows anyone you specify to receive access to your medical records. Without a HIPAA Release, your family and friends cannot legally access your medical records. This makes it challenging for them to act on your behalf in the event that you are incapacitated.
  4. A Declaration of Preened Guardian allows you to appoint a guardian for yourself in case you ever need one. If you become incapacitated, your Preneed Guardian will become your legal guardian and will have the final say over your affairs.
  5. A Living Will allows you to document your end-or-life wishes in the event that you are unable to communicate them yourself due to an unacceptable quality of life. Living Wills limit familial disputes: when clear end-of-life wishes are on paper, it is less of a likelihood that your family members will fight over the process.
  6. A Joint Revocable Living Trust allows the you to name a trustee and successor trustee(s) who can manage financial assets that are put into the name of the trust. A Joint Revocable Trust usually involves a married couple and offers benefits of tax advantages and avoidance or reduction of probate.
  7. A Pour Over Will determines the transfer of your assets following your death. It directs any assets that pass through the will at your death to be transferred to your Revocable Living Trust.

For more information, contact The Presser Law Firm, P.A. for a complimentary preliminary consultation.

The Presser Law Firm, P.A.
6199 N. Federal Highway, Boca Raton FL 33487
(561) 953-1050 or e-mail Info@AssetProtectionAttorneys.com