Important Areas Of Planning

H.E.L.P.’s goal is to help older adults live better, longer.

We assist Older Adults (and their friends and families) in planning for the future. Important areas of planning that we provide information and advice on include the following:

  • Planning for a potential period of incapacity, and the impact of incapacity on making health care decisions and managing finances.
  • Planning for a potential period of long-term care (home care, nursing home care, etc.), and how to pay for that care.
  • Planning for transferring your assets to your intended heirs at your death (or before), including issues related to probate and probate avoidance.
  • Planning to minimize or eliminate taxes (estate, income and property taxes).
  • Important Planning Documents

At H.E.L.P., we provide information and advice to older adults (and their families and friends) about planning documents that could prove valuable to them. Several important documents are described below:

  • Power of Attorney for Health Care: Names Agent to make health care decisions for you if you become incapacitated and unable to speak for yourself.
  • Written Expression of Health Care Desires: Helps you express your health care desires and what is important to you, and helps you communicate with your Agent. H.E.L.P.’s example: Your Way: A Guide to Help You Stay in Charge
  • Durable Power of Attorney for Financial Matters: Names Agent to manage financial affairs for you. Can be either “immediate” (Agent can act now) or “springing” (Agent can act only if you have become incapacitated).
  • Will: Names your heirs (those who will receive your estate) and your executor (person who will manage and distribute your estate).
  • Living Trust: Names your heirs (those who will receive your trust estate) and your trustee (person who will manage distribute your trust estate); also lets your trustee manage financial affairs of your trust if you have become incapacitated. Normally combined with a “pour-over” will.
  • Testamentary Trust: Like a living trust, except that your testamentary trust would only be effective after you die.
  • Special Needs Trust: Another type of trust, usually for the benefit of a person who receives governmental benefits (for example, SSI and Medi-Cal).