by Contributor

(Dec. 14, 2020) — As your parents age, there is often a role reversal between parent and child, and you might yourself looking after the people that have brought you up. However, as your parents age, there are many legal issues that you need to address and be aware of, and this article will cover some of the most common of these.

Caregiving and Residential Communities

Caregiving may become a prominent issue within your lives if your parent becomes ill or unable to look after themselves, or if they simply need a bit of extra help around the house. As long as your parent does not have a condition that hinders their decision-making, they will be able to decide to accept or refuse the help that you provide for them, and this must legally be accepted. Then, the best course of action for caregivers to take is to plan the care that your adult parent may need in the future before they need it. For instance, at Gatesworth, a senior living community in St Louis, they will be able to give your parents the golden years that they deserve, leaving both parties happy with the agreement.

Power of Attorney

As your elderly parent gets older, you might want to discuss the future and whether power of attorney might be appropriate for your situation, especially if your parent has a degenerative condition that will leave them struggling to make their own decisions. Having power of attorney will allow you to deal with their finances, including the sale of their home and control of any investments that they have to their name. These decisions can also be made by a legal team or a lawyer.

Their Will and Legacy

Although it might be difficult to talk about with a loved one, their will is vital to their legacy and needs to be discussed while you can do this. You should always encourage your parents to make a will in their name that covers important issues such as their finances and assets and who they will leave these to. You should also consider hiring an attorney to complete their process to make sure that their will is legally binding, such as having the right signature and wording. If there is no will, their assets will fall to their next of kin, and this can often cause familial disputes and upsets within close units. 

There is a lot to consider as your parents start to get older, both emotionally, practically, and legally, and so it is easy to forget the most important steps that you need to take as this happens. With this short guide, you will be able to ensure that your parents can have a stress-free retirement without many of the legal issues that plague families when their parents become ill or unable to look after themselves. By making the decisions now, you will be ensuring that your parent’s wishes are adhered to at all times.

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