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9 Questions to Ask Your Aging Parents about Cognitive Decline

Your elderly mother is getting forgetful and confused. What do you do now?

POSTED ON: December 23, 2021
Daughter-Asks-Aging-Parent-about-Cognitive-Decline

Waiting to ask your aging parents about cognitive decline means it may already be too late, says CNBC’s recent article entitled “Waiting to talk finance with an aging parent in cognitive decline is a mistake, experts say.”

Adult children should be talking to their elderly parents about this while they’re still working because they’re still competent and still able to fund long-term care and pay the premiums from income.

Some incidents that could trigger these conversations include a parent thinking about downsizing, claiming Social Security, going on an extended trip, or finding out one of their friends is going into long-term care.

When starting to ask your aging parents about cognitive decline, adult children should use specific questions to get a clear sense of their parents’ financial situation. However, they should understand that getting this information may take several discussions.

Here are 9 questions to ask your aging parents about cognitive decline in stages, over a period of time (from least uncomfortable to most):

  1. Where do you keep your financial and estate planning documents?
  2. What assets do you have?
  3. What are your debts? Does your spouse owe any debts?
  4. Is it possible to meet with your advisors to have a good understanding in the event of a crisis?
  5. Who are your healthcare professionals?
  6. What medications do you take and where’s your pharmacy?
  7. Do you have long-term care insurance or other plans for long-term care?
  8. What are your wishes as to end-of-life care and funeral plans and expenses?
  9. If you have a medical crisis, what kind of treatment do you want?

Evaluate their responses with the help of an elder law attorney to these basic questions and plan the next steps.

After you ask your aging parents about cognitive decline, there’s some paperwork that should be done at this point, if it hasn’t already. This includes a power of attorney, healthcare directive and a living will.

Here at Sabrina Winters Law, we have helped hundreds of families in Charlotte plan their estate. Schedule a Meeting with us today to find out how we can help you!

Reference: CNBC (Nov. 30, 2021) “Waiting to talk finance with an aging parent in cognitive decline is a mistake, experts say”

Suggested Key Terms: Elder Law Attorney, Long-Term Care Planning, Long-Term Care Insurance, Elder Care, Estate Planning, Power of Attorney, Advance Directive, Healthcare Directive

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