While important for every adult, planning for later stages of life is critical for older adults. Later life planning includes estate, funeral, advanced care, long-term care, and more depending on your family (e.g., a grandparent raising a grandchild). Unfortunately, many people often neglect these planning activities until a crisis occurs. The consequences of delaying these decisions cannot be overstated. For example, long-term care is complicated and costly. Without proper planning it may be difficult to get the care you prefer in the location of your choice (e.g., house, apartment, assisted living, nursing home, etc.).
Advanced directives are legal documents that we can create to provide instructions about medical care we receive, if we are ever not able to communicate our wishes. There are two kinds of legal documents used to communicate these wishes: living wills or medical power of attorney.