Many people desire hospice care at the end of their life, as hospice is designed to provide a better experience for patients and their families as patients transition. If you are interested in hospice care, it is beneficial to plan in advance to make your wishes known. A decision to go into hospice care also means it is time to make sure all of your affairs are in order so your loved ones are protected after you are gone.
Amen, Gantner & Capriano – Your Estate Matters, L.L.C. helps clients to ensure they can choose hospice care if they would prefer that to other options when faced with a terminal illness. We also provide assistance in winding up your affairs when you make the decision to go into hospice. Give us a call today at 314-966-8077 to speak with a St. Louis elder law attorney who has the knowledge and compassion to assist with hospice care and end-of-life issues. We’ll offer personalized advice and answer questions including:
- How can I make sure I get hospice care when I need it?
- What legal issues should be addressed when going into hospice care?
- How can a St. Louis elder law attorney help patients and their families who choose hospice?
How Can You Ensure You Get Hospice Care?
Many people want to have control over the kinds of medical care that they receive at the end of their life. Unfortunately, if you do not make your wishes known in advance and talk to your family members about your wishes, you could end up getting medical care you don’t want or your family could end up in a fight about appropriate care.
If you want to ensure you go into hospice in the event of a terminal illness, and if you want to prevent extraordinary measures from being used to prolong your life in certain circumstances, you’ll need to create a plan in advance.
There are legal tools that you can use, such as naming someone as a healthcare proxy to make decisions for you. You can talk with the person you name as your healthcare proxy and make sure that they understand you want to get hospice care.
Choosing someone in advance to act as your agent and making sure you have created a legal grant of authority gives you the power to choose who will speak for you when you cannot. This means you can ensure you have chosen a person who will respect your wishes to go into hospice. Your family also won’t have to fight about your fate and won’t be plagued with uncertainty about whether they are making the right choice.
You can also create an advanced directive and/or a living will to specify in advance whether you want a feeding tube to be used, want CPR to resuscitate you or want other extraordinary measures taken. This gives you the chance to have more control over quality of life and to ensure you can pass peacefully in hospice rather than having extraordinary measures used to leave you living a life hooked up to machines.
What Legal Issues Need to be Addressed Before Seeking Hospice Care?
While making provisions to ensure you get hospice care is often the most important issue when planning for an illness, you also need to think about winding up your affairs before going into hospice.
If you are of sound mind and able to make and communicate decisions before going into hospice care, you can take steps to finalize a last will and testament that provides for your loved ones and that allows you to determine what your legacy will be. You can also create trusts or use other estate planning tools to facilitate the transfer of assets when you are gone and to reduce the potential that the value of your estate will be partially lost due to the need to pay estate taxes.
Ideally, you should already have a will and a legacy plan in place before going into hospice. However, if you don’t already have a plan in place, this is the time to take immediate action.
How Can a St. Louis Elder Law Attorney Help Hospice Patients and Their Families?
From naming a healthcare power of attorney to creating a living will and making plans for your legacy, Amen, Gantner & Capriano – Your Estate Matters, L.L.C. has the legal knowledge you need to protect you and your loved ones at the end of your life. Give us a call today at 314-966-8077 or contact us online to find out more about how our St. Louis elder law attorneys can help you with all issues related to seeking hospice care.