Florida Incapacity Planning
What would happen to your affairs in the event that you were injured or too ill to attend to them yourself? At Edwards Elder Law, P.A., we understand this is a pressing concern for a lot of people. Planning for the future can be the best way to ensure your needs are met and your medical preferences are honored.
Our incapacity planning attorney can help you understand the various legal options that may be available to you, and we can assist you with drafting an effective incapacity plan and with applying for Medicaid long-term care benefits.
Working with us can provide you with the peace of mind you deserve. Incapacity planning is the chance for you to stay in control of your medical care and finances even if you are incapacitated.
If you have chosen who will speak for you in medical situations by naming a Health Care Surrogate and who will speak for you in financial situations by naming an Agent under a durable power of attorney, then you won’t have to settle for the default options put in place for you by the state of Florida. If you don’t have a durable power of attorney, for example, the default option is going to guardianship court and having a guardian appointed for you.
Putting a Durable Power of Attorney in place is also important for Medicaid long-term care planning. When it comes to qualifying for Medicaid long-term care benefits, Medicaid looks at countable assets and non-countable assets. If you have too many countable assets, Medicaid has options (which are different in every state) for turning your countable assets into non-countable assets. If you no longer have the legal capacity to speak for yourself, your Agent under your Durable Power of Attorney can assist with this Medicaid process of turning countable assets into non-countable assets if your Durable Power of Attorney contains the right Medicaid powers. (See more about how our Florida elder law attorney can assist you with Medicaid long-term care planning on our website’s Medicaid Long-Term Care Benefits page.)
Elements of Incapacity Planning
Incapacity planning can involve several elements and tools. Depending on your circumstances, the specific legal route you take may vary. We can help you determine whether any of the following may be right for you:
- Designation of Health Care Surrogate: A designation of Health Care Surrogate allows you to designate a specific individual to act on your behalf in the event you are injured or ill and cannot make health care decisions for yourself.
- Durable Power of Attorney: A durable power of attorney allows you to delegate responsibilities such as handling your finances and overseeing your assets, to a specific individual, known in Florida as your Agent.
- Living Will: A will provides instructions for after you have passed away, whereas a living will provides instructions for while you are alive. A living will allows you to state your wishes regarding your medical care preferences, including whether you want to be kept alive by artificial means.
Changes in Florida law have made durable powers of attorney that were created before October 2011 potentially not as effective as they once were. It is very important that durable powers of attorney signed before October 1, 2011, are reviewed by a Florida elder law attorney to determine if they need to be updated in order to continue to protect you.
Working with Edwards Elder Law, P.A.
When you choose to work with us, our incapacity planning attorney will thoroughly review your concerns and develop a personalized advance directive plan that best suits your specific needs.
We take on a limited number of clients to help ensure that each individual receives the best possible resolution to his or her unique situation. Our counsel can be your source of support as you and your family create the tools you need to navigate highly emotional situations.
Contact us to today to start planning for the future.