They say blood is thicker than water, but sometimes promises made between family members don’t hold water. Some of the most heart-rending cases our firm has ever been involved with are situations where broken promises between family members make years of love seem like a lousy investment. Situations where formal estate planning would have provided some certainty and protection from pain, but everyone thought their promises to one another would be enough.
I Will Care For Them… If You Will Care For Me
Many families in the Houston area have several generations living near enough to one another that they see each other every day. It is a blessing, but it can also cause problems. All too often grandparents who gladly spend their retirement babysitting their grandchildren with an understanding that they would eventually be taken care of by their children call us asking for help. The day has come when they are the ones asking for help instead of giving it, and the sandwich generation — the one with both their children and their parents calling out for help — is spread too thin.
What can you do when you have given years of your life to your family, and they can’t give you back the love and care they promised? There is no easy answer to this question.
The best thing to do is look forward, not back. The love you gave was not wasted, but sometimes love is not enough. Love can’t give your loved ones the strength or the money they need to care for you as you grow older and need assistance. So, as a neutral third party, we come in and assess the situation.
Making A New Plan
We figure out what sort of care you will realistically need in the coming years, how much it will cost, and what assets you currently have that can or will be called on to pay for everything. It is the same sort of analysis we do when anyone comes into our office for estate planning advice, but we appreciate that the reality is we may be working with you on a shorter timeline.
There is always a gap between what resources you have and what you might need in a worst-case scenario, so we work with you to structure your assets so you can tap into government benefits without giving up everything you have scrimped and saved for your entire life. There is no shame in doing this. The majority of all people end up relying on these benefits, whether they admit it or not.
Figuring Out The Future
If you are angry with your family for failing to provide you the care they previously promised, you might not care what sort of legacy you leave them. That’s fine. We understand. We won’t pressure you to change your mind.
But our firm can show you how to put assets into a trust that your loved ones can tap into after you are gone if certain conditions are met. If those conditions aren’t met, the assets can instead go to a charity or cause you care deeply about.
If you are in a situation where your loved ones are not living up to the promises they made regarding your long-term care, the Hegwood Law Group can help. Contact us today to schedule a meeting with our experienced team of estate planning attorneys.
Written by Kimberly Hegwood, an experienced Texas Elder Law and Estate Planning Attorney and the founder of the Hegwood Law Group, PLLC in Houston, Texas. Attorney Hegwood is a Featured Member of the National ElderCare Matters Alliance, and she and her law firm have a Featured Listing on ElderCareMatters.com – America’s National Directory of Elder Care / Senior Care Resources to help families plan for and deal with the Issues of Aging.
If you have additional questions about your family’s Elder Care / Senior Care Matters, you can count on ElderCareMatters.com (America’s National Directory of Elder Care / Senior Care Resources) to help you find America’s Top Elder Care / Senior Care Professionals. You can find Local Elder Care / Senior Care Experts by Searching our National Database by City and Service Category. (This Search feature is located on the homepage of ElderCareMatters.com).
The Elder Care / Senior Care Experts that are found on ElderCareMatters.com can provide you with the help you need in a total of 54 different Elder Care / Senior Care Services, including Elder Law, Estate Planning, Home Health, Assisted Living, Care Management, Daily Money Management, Senior Living, Investment Advisory Services, Tax & Accounting Services, Wills & Trusts, Probate plus many other Elder Care Services.
We look forward to helping you plan for and deal with your family’s Issues of Aging.