Estate Planning Considerations for Colorado Residents Diagnosed with Brain Disease

As people age, one of the most important things they can do to protect the future of their loved ones is to create a Colorado estate plan. However, estate planning is not just for retirees. Indeed, financial planners recommend that even young families develop a comprehensive estate plan in the event of the unexpected. Out of precaution, those who suffer from certain medical conditions may also consider engaging the services of Boulder estate planning lawyer.

Recently, Forbes published an article discussing estate planning considerations for those who have been diagnosed with brain diseases, including multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease. The discussion is especially relevant today, as those who suffer from brain disease are at an increased risk of developing severe complications related to COVID-19.

The first piece of advice when creating an estate plan is to make sure that all elements of the plan are tailored specifically to the needs of the individual or family. Unlike other areas of the law, there are a significant amount of resources to help families create a DIY estate plan. However, these resources are uniformly generic in their approach, and fail to consider the unique needs of a family.

Individuals with different types of brain disease are advised to consider how their diagnosis may affect their ability to plan for the future. For example, individuals who have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease may suddenly see a deterioration of their condition to the point where they are no longer competent to sign a will or other estate planning documents. Thus, these individuals should take early action to ensure that their wishes are carried out regarding their future health care decisions as well as what will happen with their assets upon their death.

Those with Parkinson’s disease face the possibility of other unique challenges that can be planned for. For example, it is not uncommon for some with Parkinson’s disease to experience handwriting that becomes very small and cramped, referred to as micrographia. This may result in a bank or other financial institution rejecting a withdrawal slip or check because the signature does not match the one they have on file. To solve this problem, anyone who has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease may have an attorney draft a document explaining the diagnosis as well as including several versions of a signature.

Regardless of the specific type of brain disorder, it is important that anyone who has a potentially serious condition take the time to create an emergency financial roadmap that can help loved ones navigate their financial situation. This may include things such as:

  • The names, addresses, account numbers and telephone numbers for all creditors;
  • Income sources, and where they are typically deposited;
  • Contact information for key people, such as a CPA, attorney, banker, or financial advisor; and
  • Any other emergency instructions

While an emergency roadmap is not a substitute for a sound estate plan, it is a step in the right direction that can help in the event of sudden incapacity.

Contact a Colorado Estate Planning Attorney

If you have any questions about setting up a Colorado estate plan, contact the dedicated attorneys at Braverman Law Group. We have extensive experience handling all types of estate planning, elder law, and special needs planning issues for clients of varying net worth, and take the time to explain the process and how we can help. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation, call 303-800-1588 today.

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