Do your parents enjoy good health, mobility and live in their own Florida home? However, are you starting to notice that they are aging, with more health issues? Can your aging Florida parents really live safely at home? This is a serious question that you and your parents must face and discuss. Are you prepared for a future when your parents could receive serious news of anything from health diagnoses and physical limitations to financial considerations and isolation issues?

Naturally, most seniors want to live in their homes indefinitely. The question is, do most seniors have the resources or support to do so? Probably not. Unfortunately, many seniors live in homes that are not designed for the complications that can arise from mobility or cognitive issues. In addition, the children of most seniors are also a part of the Sandwich Generation, or the generation that is taking care of a minor child and an aging adult, and this means that they have less time to provide care.

Although there is no guarantee that aging-in-place is a real option for your aging parents for the future, there are steps you can take to help your parents age-in-place. Below, find our aging-in-place checklist that you and your aging parents can review.

  1. Do your parents have a support system if they stay in their home? As your parents age they will need support, what does their support system look like? Do you and your siblings live close by? Who will spend time with your aging parents each day? Each week? Can you, your siblings, your family and your friends come together to help your aging parents?
  2. Be sure to address all the health issues of your aging parents now, not later. If your aging parents have a diagnosis that you know could impact them in the future, start planning now. What will they need? Will they be able to take care of themselves? What changes need to be implemented to maximize the time your aging parents can live at home independently?
  3. Will modifications need to be made if they stay in their home? If the answer is yes, those modifications should begin now, before they are needed. Unfortunately, most houses are not built to support someone with a disability. Assess the needs of the home of your parents based on a future that could include long-term care and start making changes. For example, consider adding grab bars in the bathroom or wheelchair accessible showers.
  4. In fact, based upon your answers to the above question, should your aging parents downsize? Do your aging parents live in a house that is too big? Most seniors are able to stay at home longer with a home they are able to manage themselves. Your parents should consider looking at other options now so they can control where they may need to move.
  5. Do you know what your parents can afford? How will your parents pay for any long-term care needs? Are they able to cover an additional expense of $1,000 a month for a caregiver? What about $5,000? We highly recommend that you meet as soon as possible with your Florida elder law attorney and discuss how your aging parents could pay these possible expenses.
  6. Do you know if your aging parents have completed their Florida estate planning? If the answer is no, they need to begin right away. If the answer is yes, be sure the documents are executed properly. In addition, make sure it meets their long-term care needs. Schedule a meeting with a Florida elder law attorney to review the planning of your aging parents in light of potential long-term care needs.
  7. Do your aging parents have a Florida elder law attorney? If
    your parents do and they agree, reach out and meet their Florida elder law attorney. During the meeting, find out what you should do if your aging parents are in a crisis.

We know this article raises more questions that it answers. Our office can help guide a family through long-term care planning for aging parents and loved ones. At David H. Jacoby Elder Law Advocate, P. A., we are focused on providing thorough, ethical, and timely solutions for our clients and their loved ones. We encourage you to contact us and schedule a meeting with us.