People worry about getting Alzheimer’s Disease and other forms of dementia because of what it will mean for their state of mind and ability to function independently. They should also worry about the money that it could cost them.
Most everyone knows about the cognitive effects of Alzheimer’s Disease. The science regarding how the disease works may not be well understood, but its impact on the mental abilities of patients are easy to see.
Older Americans rightfully worry about getting Alzheimer’s and what it will mean for their cognitive abilities. However, what many often overlook are the effects the disease can have on patients’ finances.
The Washington Post explains this “Facing financial reality when early dementia is diagnosed.”
The financial costs of Alzheimer’s can go far beyond health care and assisted living expenses, which can be astronomical. Because the disease impairs patients’ mental abilities, even in its early stages it can have a negative impact on a person’s ability to manage finances. Patients often forget to pay their bills. They give more money than they should to charities. And, in many cases they fall victim to scams.
The net effect is that patients can easily lose all of their money just when they need it more than ever.
Planning ahead can help guard against this problem.
By getting a General Durable Power of Attorney now, you will be granting someone else the ability to manage your finances when you are no longer able to do so for yourself.
Talk to an elder law attorney about how to get one.
Reference: Washington Post (Oct. 28, 2016) “Facing financial reality when early dementia is diagnosed.”