The Importance of End of Life Planning Discussions

Broaching the subject of end of life planning with family members can be a difficult task. The mere thought of losing a loved one can be overwhelming and emotional. But increased life expectancy and advances in modern medicine offer opportunities to make informed decisions regarding end of life care. As difficult as this conversation is, having this discussion during a time of crisis or medical emergency is far more stressful.

Studies show that patients who have planned ahead for this time in their lives have a greater quality of life when that time arrives. Surviving family members also experience less anxiety and stress during the process. In addition, certain instructions must be in writing beforehand, such as avoiding CPR--in order to be carried out.

When discussing end of life plans with family members, it can be helpful to begin with a general conversation regarding insurance, medical care and the location of important documents.

Organize important documents

The inability to locate important documents can be particularly frustrating for grieving family members and causes undue stress. Take the time to organize relevant documents in one place, including:

  • ● Last will and testament
    ● Estate plans
    ● Insurance policies
    ● Bank account information

If a Last Will and Testament has not been prepared, make that a priority. Absent a will, the probate court will determine how the estate is to be divided and the wishes of the deceased will have no place in the decision.

Life Insurance

Life insurance generally refers to two main types of insurance: term and permanent (or whole life). Life insurance is very important at any stage of life, but particularly in end of life planning.

Term life insurance provides coverage for a set period of time and, should the policyholder pass away before the expiration, the beneficiaries receive the money. The reality is that most term policies expire before the policy holder is a senior, leaving no policy in place for the golden years. Term life insurance policies can be relatively affordable in relation to the coverage provided. Explore what policies are available given age and overall health.

Permanent or whole life insurance never expires. Payment is made all at once or in installments and can be quite expensive. Unlike term life insurance, these policies do not expire, and they combine a death benefit with a savings portion.

When discussing end of life planning, it is important to know what life insurance policies currently exist and to explore whether it is beneficial to purchase additional life insurance if a policy has expired. The expense of life insurance and uncertainty in what lies ahead can make this a complex decision. But choosing the right life insurance policy is important. Gather as much information as possible regarding overall finances, healthcare decisions, and other related matters and consult a trained professional to make an informed decision.

Our team can help, so contact us for a consultation

Making choices regarding end of life planning can be difficult and confusing. The St. Louis life insurance specialists at Senior Health Solutions, LLC can help guide you through this process and provide assistance in determining what insurance coverage best suits your individual needs. Our experienced St. Louis life insurance professionals are available to answer your questions and offer advice. Contact us at (636) 244-4415 or online. If you would like to schedule an appointment but cannot come to us, we will come to you. Do not postpone this important life decision. Contact us today.

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