Planning for later life is something that most of us put off for as long as possible.
We all tend to think of ourselves as immortal. In addition, loved ones do not want to think about our ageing, much less talk about it. However, by both not telling people how we wish to be treated or planning how we might afford it leaves many of us in a state of uncertainty and worry at a time when we need to be supported most.
Our later life solicitors specialise in giving advice in relation to all aspects of late life planning for our clients across the South and beyond.
Our later life team assist with making, sometimes urgent, arrangements for the transition from independent to assisted living. Usually, this is as a result of a client’s hospital discharge or their coming to terms with the fact that they are struggling to live happily or safely on their own. We can assist in the process of discharge planning from hospital, engage with care professionals to advise on the next steps and can even assist in finding a suitable placement in residential accommodation or arrange care at home, whether domiciliary or ‘live-in’.
Our later life team works with well-established, vetted healthcare professionals to assess clients’ needs and assist them privately or in tandem with the NHS or local authority in finding the best and most appropriate placement in the circumstances.
For those arranging their own care or are already in a care environment, we can advise on your care providers’ contract for services to give you peace of mind in respect of your contractual rights.
Family members often live miles away and are concerned about how well their loved one is being looked after, especially when they have been placed in residential accommodation. We can arrange a monitoring program, including unannounced ‘spot checks’ to make sure that the standard of service is as expected. We can advise you on the next steps if there is a concern and, indeed, work with the care provider, if that’s the preferred approach.
The two most important considerations relate to a client’s needs and their finances. We advise clients with regard to the cost of care and can help guide them in relation to self-funding, local authority contributions and NHS Funded Continuing Care. For more information see Care Funding.
Care planning, particularly where it is intended to reduce the impact of the cost of care, must be done early. In practice, there is very little that can be done to protect assets, or indeed achieve the care that clients aspire to, if this planning is done at, or close to, the point of entry into care. We aim to encourage clients and their loved ones to start thinking about care planning in the same as they would about pensions – years before it is needed. In this way, everyone can work towards a plan, knowing that there are funds in place and leaving aside the guilt that is often felt when a loved one needs more support.
For more information contact us on 0333 400 4499.