While estate planning is complicated enough for anyone, making the additional provisions for the care of someone with Alzheimer's becomes even more challenging.
But the planning that needs to be done when Alzheimer's disease is a factor is not merely the estate planning. When a person has Alzheimer's, there will be significantly greater legal and financial issues that will need to be planned for and confronted early on, in order to make things go more smoothly.
While you are combatting the devasting effects that Alzheimer's is taking upon your family is not the time you want to be going through the learning curve for legal and financial issues. The early you make these provisions, the better off you will be.
When the diagnosis is Alzheimer's, you know for a certainty that the health care bills will be enormous, as the "late stages" of the disease, where the person is bedridden and needs constant care, can stretch out for years. This is generally not covered by Medicare, unless skilled nursing care is needed.
The other considerations are whether or not you qualify for any veterans benefits and how the recent changes in Medicaid affect your ability to qualify for state benefits.
It's one thing not to know the answers, but most of us don't even know the questions to ask. The problem with ignorance is that you don't know what it is that you don't know.
Your options to get educated include reading up online, paying to consult with an Eldercare attorney, and getting free information from a trusted source like the Alzheimer's Association.
On February 28th, a free program entitled "Legal and Financial Planning for Alzheimer's Disease" will be hosted by Leeza's Care Connection in Joliet at 10 AM. While there is no fee to attend, registration is required to ensure you have a seat and materials. The program will be delivered by Eldercare attorney Mark Hansen and an expert from the Alzheimer's Association, Greater Illinois chapter.
There is no cost to attend, but registration is required. You can register by calling the local office of the Alzheimer's Association at 815 744 0804.