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How to help elderly relatives with their finances

With the fact that more people in New York and across the country are living longer nowadays, many of them face difficulties with daily tasks, such as paying their bills and making investment decisions. For this reason, their family members may find it necessary to step in and assist them, which can help protect their future as well.

While it may be difficult for parents to allow family members to take over their financial affairs, doing so as soon as possible will reveal a loved one's wishes regarding long-term care arrangements. Taking such action early could also reduce conflict among family members, and the need for relatives to initiate incompetency proceedings.

Family members can begin by learning how their loved ones would like to be cared for, and where they want to live in the event their health fails. It is a good idea to prepare a health care power of ttorney and obtain a HIPAA authorization form. The power of attorney gives the appointed person the authority to make vital medical decisions on behalf of the loved one, and the HIPPAA authorization form names a person to be in charge of the elder's important health information. Family members can also protect their elderly loved one's assets by arranging an estate plan that includes a financial power of attorney as well.

While family members can assist aged loved ones with their finances and important health care decisions, they may also choose to speak with an attorney experienced with these matters. The goal will be to preserve and protect the loved one's assets for future generations.

Source: Forbes, "How To Start Managing The Finances Of An Elderly Relative", Mark Eghrari, Jan. 25, 2017

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