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nyadrn
Posts: 26,386
Topics: 269
Kudos: 6,074
Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

I am sure we have discussed this topic before but I could not find a recent one so I am posting it again.  This makes sense for any senior but especially for those who live alone at least imho.

Your personal information needs to be kept updated and in a place where your family, SO or emergency workers can find it.

Information like your doctor's name and phone number

Current medication!  If you are in need of immediate medical care, it is extremely important that first responders be able to tell what meds you are on, anything you are alergic to and any important medical conditions..   keeping this information up to date and available could save your life! and if you live alone, there might not be anyone able to answer these questions if you are incapacitiated,

You family emergency contact; name and phone number.. who do they call if you are unable to respond to questions.. your son, your daughter, sister who?

Medical coverage.. the hospital will want to know 

 

Other information about your day to day requirements that your emergency contact will need to know.. you have a pet, who will take care of it?

you have a  job, who do they call to notify that you will be out?

You have financial needs, what arrangements have you made for your emergency contact to access funds if needed?

These and a dozen other questions will come to you as you start working on this.  I have been updating mine and it is amazing how things change.  My doctor changed since the last update I made,  my health insurance card is new, etc.    So get going, make a notebook or file and tell your emergency contact where it is.. have a discussion before something happens.

 

 

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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LeCherie
Posts: 17,806
Registered: ‎08-22-2008

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

Soon after I turned 60 I gave all this to my first-born, and also made her co-owner of my bank accounts.  Her number is on my cell phone and also my iPad which I never leave home without.

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ASTRAEA
Posts: 12,924
Registered: ‎12-25-2011

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

This is a big issue for people who are only children & don't have children of their own, or frankly any other relatives who are geographically nearby!

 

Two years ago, I went to my estate attorney about setting up a trust & having the attorney act as estate executor, but it opened a whole other can of worms .. who would handle things if I was unable to myself. Any relative or friend who doesn't think seriously in terms of how much work & responsibility this can be, is foolish. And if they do think about it, they may decide that it's too much responsibility. And if you're close in age, at the point where you may need emergency or long-term assistance, that person may not be in any condition to make decisions for someone else! PS, everything's "on the back burner", until I figure out what to do.

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nyadrn
Posts: 26,386
Topics: 269
Kudos: 6,074
Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family


LeCherie wrote:

Soon after I turned 60 I gave all this to my first-born, and also made her co-owner of my bank accounts.  Her number is on my cell phone and also my iPad which I never leave home without.


Good plan.  My son has all of my info but I need to keep it up to date including password changes, plan changes etc.

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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nyadrn
Posts: 26,386
Topics: 269
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Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family


ASTRAEA wrote:

This is a big issue for people who are only children & don't have children of their own, or frankly any other relatives who are geographically nearby!

 

Two years ago, I went to my estate attorney about setting up a trust & having the attorney act as estate executor, but it opened a whole other can of worms .. who would handle things if I was unable to myself. Any relative or friend who doesn't think seriously in terms of how much work & responsibility this can be, is foolish. And if they do think about it, they may decide that it's too much responsibility. And if you're close in age, at the point where you may need emergency or long-term assistance, that person may not be in any condition to make decisions for someone else! PS, everything's "on the back burner", until I figure out what to do.


You are correct  this is a big issue and I have friends who do not feel their kids are responsible enough to handle things and so they still have an issue with who to designate.   

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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ASTRAEA
Posts: 12,924
Registered: ‎12-25-2011

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

After my aunt died & I redid my own will, I talked to a cousin about being my executor, and he agreed .. he's ~ 9 years younger than me. I sent him a couple of the will, with contact information for my attorney. But a few years later when I mentioned it, he didn't even remember it, or what he could have done with the will when he got it. I realized I had to change .. but I don't know to whom!

Registered on Online Community since 2007!
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nyadrn
Posts: 26,386
Topics: 269
Kudos: 6,074
Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family


ASTRAEA wrote:

After my aunt died & I redid my own will, I talked to a cousin about being my executor, and he agreed .. he's ~ 9 years younger than me. I sent him a couple of the will, with contact information for my attorney. But a few years later when I mentioned it, he didn't even remember it, or what he could have done with the will when he got it. I realized I had to change .. but I don't know to whom!


Boy that is scary isn't it..  that is a really good question.. who do you trust when you don't have someone?

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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Respected Social Butterfly
ASTRAEA
Posts: 12,924
Registered: ‎12-25-2011

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

My estate attorney gave me the name of a company that would administer my assets, if I became unable to do so myself. One problem is that companies like this charge a lot .. 1% (at least) of your total assets, even if it's just a matter of paying a dozen bills a month. With my assets, it would be like paying someone's annual salary! I think they might even act as or  recommend a professional "medical surrogate". But even if you're very clear about your living will, there's some leeway, and if they make a lot more money keeping you alive, than if you die, they might do more than I'd like towards that end. The place they recommended was also not near me, so I couldn't just visit them periodically to talk about things.

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nyadrn
Posts: 26,386
Topics: 269
Kudos: 6,074
Registered: ‎02-27-2008

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family


ASTRAEA wrote:

My estate attorney gave me the name of a company that would administer my assets, if I became unable to do so myself. One problem is that companies like this charge a lot .. 1% (at least) of your total assets, even if it's just a matter of paying a dozen bills a month. With my assets, it would be like paying someone's annual salary! I think they might even act as or  recommend a professional "medical surrogate". But even if you're very clear about your living will, there's some leeway, and if they make a lot more money keeping you alive, than if you die, they might do more than I'd like towards that end. The place they recommended was also not near me, so I couldn't just visit them periodically to talk about things.


Wow  I should have known that there would be a service..  but I wonder what happens to the effects and affairs of the many many people who don't have someone designated?

Life's a Journey, not a Destination" Aerosmith
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Respected Social Butterfly
ASTRAEA
Posts: 12,924
Registered: ‎12-25-2011

Re: Living alone and keeping your emergency records updated for your family

If people become unable to manage their own affairs (at any age), and don't have someone designated to do that, relatives can petition the court to have a "Guardian ad litem" appointed. It becomes a lot more complicated than an individual just identifying someone for themselves; I believe they need to have 2 or 3 doctors examine the person to determine their competence, and then the court appoints someone. My guess is that there's a fee for that service too, unless the person is destitute .. and who knows where they wind up then!

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