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How to help a caregiver with someone who is in decline

Being tapped to care for an ailing loved one may be difficult. Seeing a person you looked up to for so long being humbled by old age or illness may be too much for many to handle. Nevertheless, it remains important for new or impromptu caregivers to have specific knowledge of a person’s finances.

Indeed, we noted in a prior post how some vulnerable people may be exploited by family members, but having pertinent information is essential to the proper care of a loved one. To that end, this post will highlight a few things that caregivers should know. 

How bills are paid – With many people having online access to their bank accounts, many bills are paid through various “bill pay” services or directly with a provider through their website. A caregiver should know the due dates of monthly bills and whether they must be paid online or by  telephone.

Where are passwords – In the same vein, being able to pay bills or review finances may be difficult if a caregiver does not have access to online accounts or email addresses. So having access to particular passwords may be necessary.

Physician information – As a person declines, they may forget about medicines that they are supposed to take or when they are supposed to have appointments. As such, a caregiver should have access to a person’s physician as well as their medical records.

If you have questions about how these actions can be incorporated into an estate plan, an experienced attorney can help. 

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