Elder Guru

An Estate Plan Attorney Advises on What Seniors Should Tell Loved Ones

Wondering what an estate plan attorney advises his/her clients to say to their families about the plan? Read on in this guest post from Blake Harris, Managing Attorney at Mile High Estate Planning. Estate Plan Attorney’s Advice The details of your estate plan should not come as a surprise to a loved one after you pass away. This creates conditions that have the potential to destroy family harmony during what is already a difficult time. Knowing what the estate plan holds can help your family resolve issues in a more…

Court Victory for Ohio Assisted Living Residents

Cincinnati, Ohio seniors Betty Hilleger and Geraldine Saunders spoke up after being denied complete coverage under Ohio’s Assisted Living Waiver program. Due to a coverage gap in Medicaid, the two seniors, along with many others in Ohio, faced hundreds of thousands of dollars in assisted living charges. Ohio assisted living residents dealt with delays in processing and unaffordable bills. Justice in Aging, along with Cincinnati firm Beckman Weil Shepardson, represented Hilleger and Saunders to protest Medicaid’s illegal denial of benefits – and won. The class action lawsuit resulted in a…

Physician Orders for Life Sustaining Treatment – POLST – New Advance Directive

We’ve all heard of advance directives, living wills and health care power of attorneys, but Oregon Health and Science University developed something a little different – the “Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment” (POLST). They describe it as: a program designed to improve the quality of care people receive at the end of life. It is based on effective communication of patient wishes, documentation of medical orders on a brightly colored form and a promise by health care professionals to honor these wishes You can see their sample forms by clicking…

Download the “Your Life, Your Choices: Planning for Future Medical Decisions” Workbook

Have questions about end-of-life care? Curious how to prepare a personalized living will? Doctor Robert Pearlman, and others, wrote the Your Life, Your Choices under a Veterans Administration authorized grant, which was revised in 1997. The 52-page workbook is informative and easy to read, covering the issues important to end-of-life care decision making. Topics include: Why do you need to think about future health care decisions? If you couldn’t speak for yourself, what would you want done for you? What situations and decisions do people commonly face? Your beliefs and…

Durable Financial Power of Attorney Information: What is it? How do I Get One?

A Durable Financial Power of Attorney (DFPOA) form is a legal document that identifies another person as being able to make financial decisions on your behalf should you become unable to make the decisions yourself. The “durable” means the power granted in the document remains in force should you become incapacitated. A POA that is not “durable” becomes ineffective at the time you become incompetent. This is like a Durable Medical Power of Attorney, only it deals with financial decisions, not medical decisions. The person you identify to make decisions…

Living Will Information: What is it? How do I Get One?

A Living Will is a legal document signed by a person, when still of sound mind, that outlines his/her wishes for end-of-life medical treatment in the event he/she becomes severely disabled or suffers from a terminal illness. Living Wills are sometimes referred to as advance directives or health care directives. If you entered a permanent vegetative state, would you want to be kept alive by machines and feeding tubes? If you answer no, this is one example why you should consider drafting a living will; but don’t be confused by…

Health Care Power of Attorney Information: What is it? How do I Get One?

A health care power of attorney, sometimes called a medical power of attorney or durable power of attorney for health care or health care proxy, is the authorization for someone to make medical decisions on behalf of another should that individual become unable to make his/her own decisions. This is different from a living will, which typically outlines an individual’s wishes should he/she become terminally ill. A health care power of attorney form is a legally binding agreement that grants the decision making power to the specific individual (or individuals)…