June has been declared National Alzheimer’s and Brain Awareness Month, a 30-day event established to promote education and awareness of Alzheimer’s and other neurodegenerative illnesses while raising money for research. According to the Alzheimer’s Association, more than 5,000,000 Americans currently live with Alzheimer’s and less than 45% of seniors diagnosed with the disease are actually aware of their condition. The Alzheimer’s Association also reports 700,000 people die each year due to complications from Alzheimer’s disease. As people get older, they become increasingly vulnerable to this disease, making the management of their own affairs very difficult, if not impossible.
The first thing one might focus on when they receive an Alzheimer’s or dementia diagnosis is how unfair it is. Followed closely by the fears and realities of the personal challenges ahead and the impact the illness will have on family. This is the time when loved ones of Alzheimer’s sufferers have to start considering the possibility of guardianship and what that will entail, as well as start to plan seriously for the future. For estate planning, this could require the assistance of a knowledgeable and qualified attorney. The last thing you want to deal with during such an emotionally turbulent time is legal issues, but it is important.
If you’ve been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s or dementia, or are simply getting older, planning your estate is an ideal way to maintain control over your future. It will enable you to have final say over your medical directives, what you leave behind to your loved ones, power of attorney and all other important matters you will need to address as the disease progresses. In many respects, estate planning is one of the only ways to ensure that your voice is going to be heard if and when you start falling victim to this devastating illness.
Don’t let Alzheimer’s disease hijack your future. If you’re in the early stages of Alzheimer’s or dementia and need to start planning for what the future holds, talk to an experienced and qualified estate planning attorney immediately.
Posternock Apell, PC has a long and successful history helping clients develop comprehensive and easily executable estate plans to ensure that they and their families are taken care of. Call us today for a free phone consultation.