Finances and Insurance in End of Life: Making Sure All the Loose Ends Are Tied

Most people prepare for their passing ahead of time as they age gracefully. When illness interrupts your life expectancy, it’s important to start preparing paperwork and making arrangements for your care while you are still competent. You may not be able to make decisions for yourself as your illness progresses, which is where documents such as a living will and Power of Attorney, among others, come into play.

Living Will

Writing a living will is one of the most important pieces of paperwork that needs to be addressed when facing terminal illness. A living will is a legal outline of what medical treatments an ill person does and doesn’t want as well as their care preferences. The document needs to be easily accessible so that your loved ones know where to find it in an emergency.

Say, for example, you are an avid gardener and wish to be surrounded by real plants no matter where you are. Any detail related to your care preferences, including the condition of your surroundings, can be included in a living will. Houseplants are a great alternative for someone with a green thumb who can’t access a garden. Indoor plants give a feel of greenery to living room shelves or the bathroom windowsill while helping to keep the air fresh.

LivelyRoot features a fresh collection of hanging plants ranging from full sun and low light needs. Their indoor hanging plants include English Ivy, spider plant, and air plants such as succulents. Whether you prefer small plants with colorful blooms to decorate your porch or a hanging basket with elegant vines, the greenery and freshness of real plants add a simple, comforting touch to your surroundings.

Power of Attorney for Healthcare

Designate a Power of Attorney for Healthcare who can make medical decisions on your behalf should you become incapacitated. You may consider an alternate person with Power of Attorney as a backup in case your primary agent predeceases you or becomes incapacitated at the same time as you. Be clear with your appointed agent about your definition of quality of life, and be clear about when it’s time to stop artificial interventions.

Viatical Settlements

Life insurance policies are designed to pay out the death benefit to your beneficiaries upon your passing. Keeping up with ongoing medical expenses and insurance premiums is challenging. Many policyholders don’t realize that it’s possible to cash in your policy’s death benefit to pay for medical bills and treatment.

A viatical settlement is the sale of a life insurance policy for a lump sum cash payout that totals less than the policy’s face value and death benefit, but higher than the cash surrender value. Viatical settlement brokers facilitate viatical settlement transactions between life insurance policyholders, known as viators, and third party viatical settlement providers such as American Life Fund.

The payout in any viatical settlement example is determined by the policy’s face value, insurance premiums, the stage and type of illness, and term policy. According to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners, an individual diagnosed with a chronic illness that affects the activities of daily living and who holds an existing policy with an insurance company qualifies for a life settlement. Taking advantage of an accelerated death benefit is a great option for a financial peace of mind when preparing for the end of life expenses.

Personal Property Memorandum

It’s not uncommon for family members and beneficiaries to contest wills and start disputes over personal possessions. The best way to prevent family disputes is to draft a personal property memorandum separate from your will with detailed information about your valuable items and how they are divided.

Valuable jewels and family heirloom jewelry are traditionally passed from one generation to the next. The best way to ensure the value of your jewelry and protect expensive items from any type of loss or damage is with jewelry insurance. Your homeowners’ insurance policy or renters insurance policy provides personal property coverage for valuable jewelry in limited situations. A better option to ensure you have enough coverage for your jewelry items is a jewelry policy.

Jewelry coverage provides worldwide protection in case of theft or mysterious disappearance at a $0 deductible and no claim impact. All types of jewelry — engagement rings, wedding rings, a string of pearls, bracelets, and necklaces — can be included in a jewelry insurance policy. Whether you need a stand-alone policy for an individual piece or coverage for your entire collection of jewelry items, a jewelry insurance policy provides the peace of mind that your jewelry pieces are protected.

When preparing for the end of life there are several important things to take care of before it’s too late. Prepare a living will, designate someone with Power of Attorney for healthcare, consider your life insurance and viatical settlement options, and draft a personal property memorandum to make sure all of your bases are covered ahead of time.

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