Estate Planning Attorney | If you or a loved one has recently been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, it’s important to start the estate planning process immediately so you can be protected as the disease progresses. There are a few legal documents that an estate planning attorney would recommend having in place.
It’s important to note that a diagnosis of dementia or Alzheimer’s does not mean that you are not mentally competent to make estate planning decisions. In Florida, you must have “testamentary capacity” — meaning you must understand what you are signing and the implications of it.
A durable power of attorney document is arguably the most important piece of estate planning if you’ve been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. This document allows you to appoint someone else to make decisions on your behalf once you become incapacitated. This allows a family member or spouse to not only access financial information, like paying bills, but prevents going to court over appointing a guardianship.
Additionally, working with an estate planning attorney to develop a healthcare proxy is important. This ensures that your healthcare wishes are carried out once you become incapacitated. A health care proxy will only take effect once you can no longer communicate your wishes.
Along with these documents, it’s important to have a basic estate plan in place including wills and trusts. Once you are ruled as incapacitated, you will no longer be able to make these changes or create new documents regarding your estate, so it’s important to have these in place before that happens.
If you were recently diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or are looking to help a loved one with their estate planning, contact The Law Office of Michelangelo Mortellaro to develop a plan of action. An estate planning attorney there can provide insight and offer support. Schedule a free consultation today!