A recent article in Forbes considered these question and others. The article, titled "Is Your Aging Loved One "Losing It"? Five Strategies to Help You Prepare For Managing the Money," also provides some practical pointers, to include:
- Learn about the assets and financial responsibilities you and your loved one have.
- Take time to get to know your loved one’s financial advisor, accountant, broker and banker.
- Do not accept financial illiteracy.
- Accept the potential responsibility you may have one day, as a way of protecting yourself against fraud and financial abuse.
- Check your legal documents and be sure that you have what is needed to take over financial management if that time comes.
Each of these points is important. However, I will add my own to the mix – don't ignore the issue.This is no time to put your head in the sand.
While it can be hard admitting that a loved one is "losing it" cognitively, matters are only made worse when their financial matters crash and burn, too. If you already are at that point, then it may be wise to have a family meeting to coordinate your plan of action together.
Even closer to home, take a good look in the mirror. Do you have your own estate planning in place, so your loved ones could take care of your financial matters?
Reference: Forbes (February 14, 013) "Is Your Aging Loved One "Losing It"? Five Strategies to Help You Prepare For Managing the Money"