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Wednesday, August 03, 2011

Caring for Your Partner in the Golden Years

The other day I blogged about elder care and how a child can financially care for a parent who has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or showing signs of dementia.  But what if there are no children to care for the senior?  Many gay and lesbians who grow old together find that they have no support chain to lean on outside their own community; many do not have children or close family members that can care for them.  Consider the bankruptcy case in California of two long-term “married” partners who tried (successfully) to file bankruptcy as a married couple due to medical bills associated with the terminal illness of one of the men.  Their entire support network was comprised of the two of them.  Now, by no means am I suggesting that gays and lesbians are the only people who face these difficulties, but we have more than our proportionate share of legal hurdles when it comes to trying to provide care for our partners and loved ones.  What do you do when your aging partner has been diagnosed with dementia and/or Alzeheimer’s disease?  As I said in my last post and several posts before that, having a Power of Attorney is a high priority for unique families, as is a health care directive, and HIPAA waiver.

However, caring for each other as you grow older is a bit more complicated than that.  What happens when the Alzheimer’s actually settles in?  When your loved one needs more care than you can provide by yourself?  Assisted living facilities, the good ones that you want to send family to, are not cheap.  My mother had to make a decision recently in regards to putting my grandmother in an assisted living home.  The monthly cost of this care facility is several thousand dollars, a figure my mother is willing to pay so that her mother can receive compassionate care.  Understanding the rising costs of healthcare is an absolute necessity for unique families.  You cannot wait until your fifties to start thinking about it.

I like to think that my practice, Unique Estate Law, is more than just a law firm.  I consider myself an advocate.  I went into this practice area because there are so many unique families out there that must struggle to achieve what comes (relatively) easy for others.  Call me today to get yourself on the path to a safe and secure future.  I can put you in touch with financial planners that can help you plan for your later years, as well as, help you secure the documents you need to help care for your partner and your partner for you.


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From within Hennepin County Unique Estate Law represents clients throughout Minnesota, including Minneapolis, Edina, Bloomington, St. Louis Park, Minnetonka, Plymouth, Wayzata, Maple Grove, St. Paul, and Brooklyn Park.



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