Estate planning after you have been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s can be problematic for your family. They may not think that your estate plan is accurate because of your condition.
For instance, say you want to leave someone out of your will. You have your own reasons to do it, and you even talked with the person in advance. You don’t leave them anything.
However, rather than just accepting it, they decide to contest the will. They claim that you had Alzheimer’s when you wrote it, so you simply forgot to include them. They may also argue that your condition made you more vulnerable to suggestions, and someone used undue influence to cut them out of the will.
These are just two examples, but they illustrate the root problem: If there is a question about your mental capacity, it could leave holes in your estate plan. It could lead to disputes and arguments between your heirs. Even if the estate plan is accurate — you didn’t make any mistakes — that does not guarantee that the plan will hold up.
With 5.8 million people in the United States with Alzheimer’s, this is something that families need to consider. It is also why it’s important for people not to put off their estate planning. Getting it done before any diagnosis gets made could give the estate plan some more strength and help it stand up to a contest.
No matter where you are in this process or what medical conditions you may have, it’s important to understand exactly what steps you need to take moving forward with your estate plan.