You have a Special Needs loved one in your life and you’ve briefly thought about what may happen to them in the future if you are no longer around. However, you have not put together a concrete life plan in the unforeseen event that you are not there to care for them. If this is you, please read on…
There are several steps you should take to construct a Life Plan for your Special Needs loved one. A Life Plan is a great resource that can help create a seamless transition between you as the primary caregiver and any future caregivers that will step into your shoes.
Step 1: Create a set of Caregiver Instructions – develop a personal letter from you to the future caregivers that describes your wishes, goals and desires for your loved one. Additionally, this document provides insight on the individual’s likes, dislikes, hobbies, and overall personality.
Step 2: Personal Information – create a collection of personal contact information on you, your family, any friends, case workers, advisors, or other important people that would be considered part of your circle of support.
Step 3: Legal Documents – compose a list of (and copy of) all the important legal documents for your family. This includes Wills, Trusts, Powers of Attorney, or other agreements or contracts.
Step 4: Financial Information – this section allows you to store information on all of your finances as it relates to your loved one. It will include your Net Worth and what will be passed on to the loved one, what the income and/or expected expenses of the loved one are or may be in the future, and a calculation of the necessary amount needed to pass on to your loved one to care for them for their lifetime.
Step 5: Taxes, Insurance and Other – this step offers an opportunity to track taxes (for historical information), list the insurances and keep of copy of policies, or to place other pertinent information regarding your Special Needs loved one.
The more organized your plans are the easier it will be for a future caregiver to take your place in the future. If your Special Needs loved one will always be dependent on you, you must have a plan in place to allow caregivers to step in and continue your same level of care. Providing as much detail as possible will help make the transition much better for you, your family, and especially your Special Needs loved one.
Please check out our Life Plan Builder with specific instructions, checklists and forms on each of the above steps to help you create your own Life Plan today.