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3 Things 9-19

Thing One Why people 50 and older should have life insurance. Multiple studies show that many Americans have not taken critical steps toward protecting their family’s financial future if the unexpected happens. If someone (children, grandchildren, etc.) relies on your income for their well-being and you don't have enough money to pass on to them to ensure their continued well being should you die suddenly, you need life insurance. It's that simple. And here are some additional reasons you may need life insurance if you are 50 years old or older:

  • You are paying off debts, like a mortgage or credit card balance

  • You are worried about covering your final expenses

  • You want to protect your existing assets

  • You want to supplement your retirement income with the cash

  • value component of a permanent life insurance policy

  • You want assistance with estate or legacy planning

Best types of life insurance for people 50 and older: Term life insurance is a good fit for people who are looking for coverage for a set period. For example, you may feel that you need coverage until your kids are finished with school or until your mortgage is paid off. Permanent life insurance is a good option for people who want the security of lifelong coverage (as long as payments are made). It can be helpful with final expenses and legacy planning, and the cash value component can be beneficial to retirees. Due to the cash value component and the coverage duration, permanent life insurance policies are more expensive than term. Therefore, it is essential to ensure the premiums are within your current and future budget. There are lots of options. Let us know if you need help sorting it all out.

Thing Two Looking Out For Those Who May look Out For You In The End Think about it - you've done a lot of life planning and preparation for your future and those you care about. You've worked hard, saved, invested, bought insurance, planned for retirement, and probably already have a Will. But what about planning and sharing your health and medical wishes with your family - do your loved ones know what they are? If not, you may be putting them in the very unwelcome position of having to make critical and life-sustaining treatment decisions on your behalf. The fact is, by law, that's exactly what they will be required to do. As uncomfortable as the subject may be, each one of us is susceptible to life-threatening conditions every day. Even though it's impossible to plan for every incident, having your medical and health care wishes established in a legal document can be very comforting for both you and those who care about you. That’s where Advance Directives come in. What Are They? Advance Directives are legal documents that are better known as either a Living Will or a Power of Attorney for Health Care. As a competent adult, you have the right to give consent for all your health care decisions. However, if for some reason you are physically unable to give consent for treatments or procedures, these documents will provide direction to your family and the health professionals who care for you. The advances of modern technology and the human body's ability to sustain itself have created many new liabilities and difficult decisions for health care professionals. That's why it has become increasingly important for you to take a proactive role in the planning of your future medical treatment. Living Will In the event of a terminal health condition, this important document will give your health care professionals instructions about the type of medical treatments you wish to have. A Living Will is only acted upon when your physician, along with two others, agree that you will not regain consciousness or an acceptable state of health. In addition, you have the option to name a trusted relative or friend as a Power of Attorney who, in these circumstances, is authorized to make health care decisions on your behalf. Providing your family and physicians with an expression of your final health care desires will comfort your loved ones in a situation that will already be difficult and emotional. Power of Attorney for Health Care In this document, you will designate someone to make decisions about your medical care in the event that your medical condition leaves you unable to communicate your wishes. The person you name will be authorized to speak for you, not only when you are in a terminal condition, but any time a health condition occurs where it is determined that you are unable to make your own decisions. You can also include instructions that establish the types of medical treatment you prefer, and under what circumstances you would like these decisions made. If you’ve decided to get and Advance Directive you should: • Initiate discussions with close family members, your physician(s), and the person you intend to name as your Power of Attorney for Health Care. This will help you clarify your wishes, and at the same time provide those close to you with important information for future medical decisions. • Evaluate your health condition and make an effort to determine the possibilities of medical treatment you may need in the future. Use the guidelines you develop as a basis for your documentation. • Complete and sign the document you have created, adding or modifying any wording to best describe your wishes. It is extremely important to follow and witnessing instructions that are on the form accurately. Most states require two "disinterested" witnesses. Be sure to cover your bases. Family conflicts, special circumstances or specific legal concerns may require additional legal documentation. In that case, you may want to consult an experienced attorney. While we’re not attorneys and therefore can’t offer you legal advice, we can help you create these documents. All that would be left after you filled out (electronically) a form and answered a few questions would be for you to print the documents and have them signed by you and your witnesses. You may still wish to have an attorney review them after they are prepared, but in many states (including Georgia), the law says you do not have to have a lawyer prepare living wills and health care powers of attorney for you. Your documents need only to be clear, concise and within the guidelines of the laws of your state. Let us know if you need help with this. It’s a fairly quick process and can save your loved ones from having to endure headaches on top of heartache when the time comes.

Thing Three Just A Thought Procrastination is the lazy cousin of fear." - Noelle Hancock

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