Modern medicine is keeping our bodies alive longer, but it isn’t necessarily keeping our minds alert for longer. As a result, more and more people are becoming mentally incapacitated before they pass away. There are many dishonest people who will take advantage of incapacitated persons, tricking them into transferring an asset for far less than its true value or defrauding them of the asset completely. It has already happened to a few of our clients.
I have had several of our clients get caught up in these fraudulent schemes. Clients are promises a million dollars from the Irish Sweepstakes if they would just send in $10,000 today to cover the paperwork.
If your spouse or parent becomes incapacitated, it is important for you to have their name removed from all of the assets. In some cases, you can no longer use the incapacitated person’s social security number on the accounts, so you must obtain a new taxpayer identification number for the trust. In other cases, you have to inventory and appraise all of the assets when you assume control, to prevent someone from accusing you of stealing or mismanaging assets.
If you find yourself in this situation, call us to schedule an appointment to discuss what needs to be done.