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Life is unpredictable, and a sudden disability can throw even the best-laid estate plans into chaos. Understanding how to adapt your estate plan to accommodate new disability considerations is crucial for ensuring peace of mind and financial security for you and your loved ones. This guide will help you navigate this challenging situation with the assistance of a Reno estate attorney.

Understanding How a Disability Affects Your Current Estate Plan

Reno estate attorney specifically at Anderson, Dorn, and Rader, helping a client

Impact on Existing Plans

When a disability occurs, it can significantly impact your existing estate plan. Assets you intended to leave to your loved ones may need to be reallocated to cover unexpected medical expenses and long-term care costs. Moreover, the management of your estate might need to be adjusted to accommodate the new circumstances. A Reno estate attorney can help you reassess your plan and make necessary adjustments to ensure your assets are protected and allocated according to your new needs.

Reviewing Beneficiary Designations

One of the first steps to take is reviewing your beneficiary designations. Ensure that these designations align with your current wishes and the new needs created by the disability. This includes reviewing life insurance policies, retirement accounts, and other financial instruments to ensure that your estate plan remains intact and beneficial to all involved. Your Reno estate attorney can assist in this review to ensure accuracy and alignment with your updated goals.

Legal Tools and Documents to Update in Response to Disability

Power of Attorney

Updating your power of attorney documents is essential. This legal tool allows you to designate someone to make financial and healthcare decisions on your behalf if you become incapacitated. Ensure your chosen representative understands your wishes and is prepared to act in your best interest. A Reno estate attorney can help you explore your options and integrate long-term care insurance into your overall plan.

Living Will

A living will outlines your healthcare preferences should you become unable to communicate them. Updating this document to reflect any new medical conditions or preferences resulting from the disability is critical. It ensures that your healthcare decisions are respected and followed.

Your Reno estate attorney can collaborate with your financial planner to create a comprehensive plan that addresses all aspects of your financial needs.

Financial Provisions for Long-Term Care and Disability Support

Long-Term Care Insurance

Consider investing in long-term care insurance if you haven't already. This type of insurance can cover expenses that traditional health insurance does not, such as nursing home care, in-home care, and assisted living facilities. It can be a

crucial component of your updated estate plan.

Budgeting for Disability Expenses

Work with a financial planner to budget for the new expenses associated with the disability. This may include medical treatments, home modifications, and daily living assistance. Proper financial planning can help ensure that your estate remains solvent and can continue to support your loved ones.

Role of Special Needs Trusts and Guardianships

Special Needs Trusts

A special needs trust can be an invaluable tool for managing the finances of a disabled loved one without jeopardizing their eligibility for government assistance programs. These trusts allow you to set aside funds specifically for the care of the disabled person, ensuring their needs are met without compromising their benefits. A Reno estate attorney can help you establish and manage a special needs trust tailored to your situation.


In some cases, establishing a guardianship may be necessary. A guardianship gives someone the legal authority to make decisions on behalf of the disabled person. This can provide peace of mind, knowing that a trusted individual is managing the affairs of your loved one in accordance with your wishes.

Adapting your estate plan in light of a disability requires careful consideration and expert guidance. By understanding the impacts on your current plan, updating essential legal documents, making financial provisions for long-term care, and utilizing tools like special needs trusts and guardianships, you can ensure that your estate plan continues to serve its intended purpose.

At Anderson, Dorn & Rader Ltd., we are here to help you navigate these changes. Contact us for a personalized consultation to discuss how we can adapt your estate plan to meet new disability cons

iderations, ensuring peace of mind and financial security for you and your family.

Wealth Counsel
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