In one of our recent posts, we discussed the matter of updating one’s estate plan whenever a major life event happens. Such an event might be a divorce, the marriage of a child, a birth, a death or anything that, if not addressed in the estate plan, could lead to confusion, disappointment or loss of assets.
Another such matter may be the decision to provide special care or accommodations to aging parents. The adult children of aging parents may have to decide who will provide that appropriate care in whatever form it takes. For example, a recent article describes the decision of a husband and wife in Ontario to welcome into their home the wife’s aging parents.
The wife discussed the matter with her husband and her siblings before making the decision. She said the family came to an agreement, and her husband was very much in favor of the seniors moving in.
There were also privacy, financial and safety issues to consider. The homeowners have two 19-year-old children living in the home, and adjustments to the home were made to ensure that everyone had some privacy; the wife’s elderly mother has severe arthritis and must use a scooter and a walker to get around, so appropriate accommodations were installed; and the cost of those changes had to be covered.
Every family is different, and how to provide for each family member is a subject for family discussion. A major change such as placing elderly parents in special care should prompt a review of one’s estate plan. To ensure that your plan protects your interests and meets your family’s goals, it is a good idea to speak with a lawyer with experience in this complex area of law.