Diagnosed with Dementia? Here's What to Do Next

A dementia diagnosis affects more than just the person diagnosed. For years, we’ve watched Alzheimer’s disease strike the ones we love, affecting more than five million Americans – and growing.

Often known as “the long goodbye,” Alzheimer’s disease comes with a set of issues that can affect your family for years to come if not dealt with appropriately and in the right time.

 These issues are ones we’d like to help you avoid at Grimaldi Law Firm in Hollywood, Florida.

Maria Shriver, proud champion of Alzheimer’s disease research efforts, knows the devastation of the disease firsthand.  Her beloved father, Sargent Shriver, founder of the Peace Corps and one-time candidate for Vice President of the United States, died of the disease in 2011 after being diagnosed in 2003.

Below are the five things that Shriver recently reported for NBC.com about what Alzheimer’s or dementia victims should do once a diagnosis has been confirmed:

1.     Execute powers of attorney and advance medical directives. 

Before cognitive impairment deteriorates, executing powers of attorney will allow for peace of mind. Appointing a trusted person to take over any financial and medical decisions in your place as the diseases progresses will mean you’ll be taken care of safely and appropriately.

2.     Create a will.

If you have not already created a will that carefully lays out how your assets will be distributed upon your death, now is the time to create one.  If you have already created a will while in good health, it would be wise to make necessary updates to beneficiaries or the addition of any assets you have acquired since creating your first draft. 

3.     Create an estate plan. 

Preserving your assets is a critical step once you are diagnosed with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia. An estate planning attorney can help you preserve these assets for the future which will ensure any long-term care you may need will be covered.

4.     Communicate

Receiving any diagnosis is not easy, but now is the time to openly communicate with family members, for emotional support, and especially to make important decisions for your care. Let them know where important documents are stored and be honest about your wishes and needs.  Part of our planning together will mean creating a recorded copy of your wishes for your family, to achieve clarity on your plan.

5.     Do not procrastinate. 

Receiving a progressive disease diagnosis such as Alzheimer’s and other dementia diseases means time is of the essence. Regardless of your age and current health status upon diagnosis, dementia will not wait until you have your financial affairs in order. Immediate action is necessary to put these protections in place for you and your family. 

More information and inspiration on dealing with Alzheimer’s and other dementia diseases can be found at MariaShriver.com.

Call Grimaldi Law Firm to schedule a time for us to sit down and talk about a Family Planning Session, where we can identify the best ways for you to ensure your legacy remains protected and financial security will be guaranteed for your family.

At Grimaldi Law Firm, your future is our present.

We can be reached at (954) 491-8707



Special Note: The information on this blog is of a general nature and is not intended to answer any individual’s legal questions. Do not rely on information presented herein to address your individual legal concerns. If you have a legal question about your individual facts and circumstances, you should consult an experienced real estate attorney. Your receipt of information from this website or blog does not create an attorney-client relationship and the legal privileges inherent therein.