WYTYCHAK ELDER LAW, PLLC NEWS
March 2015, Issue 56
WHAT IS GOING ON?
On Wednesday, March 4, 2015, the Alzheimer’s Association is having an all-day seminar on Understanding and Normalizing Dementia Caregiving. It will be located at the Immaculate Heart Retreat Center, 6910 South Ben Burr Road, Spokane, WA. It will be from 10 to 3. The cost is $15.00 per person which includes lunch.
On Wednesday, March 11, 2015, the Alzheimer’s Association will present Living with Alzheimer’s for Early Stage Caregivers from 9 to 3 at the Village at Orchard Place (formerly Heritage Place). Reservations are required, please call 666-2996.
The Post Falls Senior Center presents the GOLD RUSH 2015 on Saturday, March 21, 2015 from 5 to 10 pm at the Greyhound Park and Event Center! There will be a silent auction, dinner, dancing, raffles, and music from the Rhythm Dawgs. Tickets are $25 per person available from the Post Falls Senior Center or the Post Falls Chamber of Commerce.
GET YOUR TICKETS NOW for the 15th Annual Alzheimer’s Association Masquerade Gala! The event will be on April 11, 2015 at the Davenport Hotel in Spokane, Washington. There will be both a silent auction and live auction, entertainment, and an elegant dinner. Tickets are $100 per person. For more information, contact Terry at (509) 473-3390.
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“The moment where you doubt you can fly, you cease for ever being able to do it.”
– Peter Pan, J.M. Barrie
WHY DO I NEED THAT? BY KATE COYLE
HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY!
I hear it all the time. “Do I really need a Will?” “Won’t my kids be able to take care of things?” “Can’t I just tell the bank what I want?” The truth is, a handshake and a smile used to be enough for doctors, hospitals, banks, etc... to allow someone to be able to speak on another’s behalf or manage another’s property and accounts. However, times have changed. Increasingly, institutions are requiring that certain documents be in effect before speaking to anyone other than the client/ patient, regardless of their relationship. I have put together a guide of the different types of documents that exist in Idaho, and why, yes, you do need to have an estate plan in place to ensure that your wishes are fulfilled in the event of illness or death
Powers of Attorney for Health Care- This document nominates someone (called an Attorney in Fact) to make health care and living situation decisions if you cannot make or communicate your own decisions. It also includes a document called the “Living Will” which directs how you want to be treated in an end of life situation. You can separately fill out a POST (Physician’s Orders on Scope of Treatment) form with your physician, which is comparable to a do not resuscitate order.
Powers of Attorney for Finances- This document nominates someone (called an Attorney in Fact) to make financial, business, and monetary decisions for you. These can be effective immediately or only effective when a doctor says that you can no longer make reasonable decisions regarding your finances.
Will- Anyone over the age of 18 can make a will. If you are worried about where your property will go when you pass away, a will can resolve doubt for you and your beneficiaries. Wills allow you to: choose friends and relatives you want your property to go to, make charitable bequests, choose a trusted and responsible person to be your personal representative, name a guardian
for minor children or incapacitated adults, and take advantage of tax savings which may result from a properly drawn will.
What is Probate, and do I need it?- Even if you have a Will, Probate may still be required. Probate is the court procedure for transferring title of a deceased person’s property to the proper survivors. If there is a valid will, the estate still needs to be probated if the estate owns real estate (to satisfy title companies) or if the probate estate is greater than $100,000.00.
Trusts- Trusts are legal entities which own property in the name of the Trust, as opposed to someone owning property in your individual name. Trusts, when properly created and funded, can avoid the probate process because a Trust will appoint a person to be in charge of administering the trust estate called a “Trustee.” Instead of having to go to court to have a person appointed by a judge to be in charge through the Probate process, the Trustee is already in a position of authority to begin administering assets.
Community Property Agreements- Married couples can record a document called a Community Property Agreement directing the transfer of marital assets upon the death of one spouse. This transfers property to the surviving spouse outside the Probate process.
Once these documents have been prepared, it is also important to review any documents that you have executed every few years to make sure that they still reflect your wishes, and that no changes need to be made. The better the shape your estate plan is in, the easier things will go for your family in the future. The bottom line is, if you want to ensure that your wishes are followed through upon, put it on paper in one or a combination of the above documents!