Between 2016 and 2050, the percentage of the world’s population 65 years of age or older is expected to double to 17%. Almost one out of every five people will be a senior. More than a million people die each year from cancer, heart disease, diabetes, influenza, and other health issues in addition to aging.
As the elderly population grows, more people face difficult choices about the needs of elderly loved ones. It can be challenging to address your loved one’s care, living arrangements, finances, and funeral arrangements, but doing so can ensure your loved one retains their dignity in their final days.
The elderly or people who are ill are usually unable to work and may have limited financial resources. One way to address your family member’s financial needs is pursuing a settlement. With a viatical from American Life Fund, your family member would receive a lump cash payment in exchange for their life insurance policy. The buyer would become the policy’s beneficiary and would also be responsible for paying any remaining fees for the policy. Obtaining a viatical settlement is an effective way of reducing monthly expenses and ensuring your loved one has enough cash on hand to cover their expenses.
Another advantage of pursuing a viatical settlement is that the money is tax-free. Viatical settlements also pay more than the cashout price for the insurance policy.
Your loved one may also own a home. If they move to receive personal care, they may opt to sell the property to secure additional funds. They may also want to pass the property on to family members. Their options should be discussed before their passing to ensure the family adheres to their wishes.
Many legal issues should be addressed before a person dies. If a person dies without a will, a judge will decide who will receive their estate and specific possessions. Relatives can spend years in court arguing for property or items that were meaningful to them, and it can be expensive to settle the estate. Talk to your loved one about their legal arrangements and make them an appointment with an attorney if they do not have a will.
Your loved one may also need to appoint someone to make medical decisions for them. A person who has medical power of attorney (POA) acts as their agent and can make medical choices about their care and whether or not they will undergo medical procedures. Your loved one may also want to sign a do not resuscitate (DNR) order. A lawyer can help your loved one appoint a POA. Doctors have DNR paperwork available that your loved one can sign if they choose.
Ideally, you should encourage your loved one to address their legal matters before their condition deteriorates, so all their wishes are respected.
Assessing Personal Care Needs
Whether your loved one is going to a doctor’s appointment, meeting with an attorney, and making their final arrangements, they will want to look their best. You can encourage them to do some shopping and invest in a petite white blazer, comfortable dress pants, and other clothes that will make them feel good about their appearance. Dressing well can help boost a person’s confidence. Investing in a nice wardrobe for your loved one is an effective way of caring for their routine needs.
Your loved one may also need the services of home health aides or personal care aides. To maintain your loved one’s dignity, it’s essential to discuss their needs with them privately and, if possible, involve them when hiring caregivers. Ensuring they participate in the process will ensure they feel empowered to make their own decisions even if they need extra help at home.
Making Final Arrangements
It can be challenging to discuss final arrangements with a loved one, but talking about their wishes is a critical way of showing them you respect them and want to show that respect with an appropriate funeral. Some people feel empowered when they can make their own choices about the music that will be played, who will speak, and what will be engraved on their headstone. Knowing funeral and burial details have been addressed can also provide your loved one with peace of mind during their final days.