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What Does Incapacitated Mean in Elder Law & Estate Planning? (Part3)


Estate planning is often associated with distributing assets after one's passing. However, it is equally important to consider the possibility of incapacity during our lifetime.
Incapacity can strike unexpectedly due to illness, injury, or advanced age, making it crucial to have a comprehensive estate plan in place. In this article, we will explore the importance of planning for incapacity as part of your overall estate planning strategy.

Understanding Incapacity: Incapacity refers to a state in which an individual is unable to make sound decisions or manage their affairs. It can arise from various factors such as dementia, cognitive decline, mental illness, or physical disabilities. Without proper planning, incapacity can lead to financial mismanagement, disputes among family members, and potential exploitation.

Wills and Estate Planning

Making a will or any estate planning document that needs your signature, such as a trust or transfer on death deed, requires you to have capacity. You must understand what you are signing.

A will is only valid if you had the required mental capacity when you signed it. The court can invalidate your will if it finds that you were incapacitated when you signed it.

For people with cognitive difficulties impacting capacity, it is possible for capacity to fluctuate. A person with dementia may cycle through periods of lucidity and incapacity.

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Always tell the truth. It's how you want your child to behave, right?