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Vital documents needed to assist the elderly

As a caregiver for your loved one or elderly parent, you want to provide the best care available and do the right thing. You also want to make sure to keep their financial situation as strong as possible.

These admirable goals often hinge on having the proper documentation on hand at all times.

The necessary papers

AARP emphasizes holding and organizing documents that carry legal weight. Agencies often require these papers to verify identity and to make changes to addresses. You might also have to present these papers to allow payments to come into a new or changed bank account.

Agencies often require original documents that have a raised seal or other official identifying information. A partial list of essential documents includes the following items:

  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate
  • Death certificate
  • Deeds to cemetery plots
  • Military discharge papers
  • Divorce decree

Availability of these documents could help your loved one receive valuable benefits or prove payment of a service. Without them, you might need to do additional research and pay fees.

The plan for the future

Part of effective estate planning requires you to look ahead and determine what documents you will need after the death of your loved one. You also might need to play additional roles at this time. In the case of children with special needs, you might need to look into education programs, SSDI, and state and local disability programs. Each program or service will require unique forms of documentation.

Preparation will help you meet the many challenges of caregiving. Having a solid legal plan allows you to provide the best care for your loved ones.

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