Life is precious, and everyone strives to achieve longevity. However, you do have to be pragmatic about the eventualities that you may face if you do in fact live to an advanced age.
Back in 2010 the United States Census Bureau released some interesting demographic statistics. One of them is very much relevant to the field of elder law.
Among ten-year age groupings the fastest-growing of all between the years 2000 and 2010 was the set of Americans between the ages of 85 and 94.
40% of people who are at least 85 years of age are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. Alzheimer’s causes dementia which can make it impossible for sufferers to make their own decisions in a sound manner.
Severe Alzheimer’s disease can be physically debilitating as well, and in fact you may be surprised to hear that Alzheimer’s is the sixth leading cause of death in America.
Alzheimer’s alone is attention-getting when you consider the contingencies that you may face as an elder, but of course it is not the only cause of incapacitation.
Given the expanded lifespans that we are seeing incapacity planning is a must for all serious minded individuals. You should certainly execute durable powers of attorney naming decision-makers of your choosing to handle your affairs in the event of your incapacitation.
The inclusion of a living will stating your preferences regarding medical procedures is also recommended.
As elder law attorneys we can assist you if you have not yet executed these important documents. Give us a call at (216) 472-1500 in Cleveland or (440) 951-1525 in Willoughby to set up a free consultation.