Sandy Myerson has written a book called Elder Care Assistance: A Practical Guide Covering Health, Financial and Legal Considerations, which is a practical guide for everyone. Something could happen to us or our spouses at any moment, and people need to be able to pick up where we left off, know where different assets are, and understand the process.
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The following is a podcast from a qualified senior care provider, hurt, on the answers for elders radio show. And Welcome back to answers for elder’s radio. I am here with a brand new guest, a lady by the name of Sandy Myerson. Sandy, welcome to the program thank you. You know, I am very glad you’re here because you’ve written a book and is called again elder care assistants. Tell me a little bit about what it is and who it’s far. It’s a practical guide covering health, legal and financial considerations, and it is for everyone. No one knows when it crisis is going to take place and we need to have our items available at any point when we need them. You know, and that’s really true, like something could happen to us in any minute, and especially with our spouses or family members. They need to be able to you know, to pick up where we left off, to know where different assets are, to understand the process and understand specifically what your desires are as you age. Isn’t that True, Sandy? Yes, it’s what you want, not what your family members want for you. MMMM. So tell me a little bit about what is involved. In being prepared. And why? Okay, and being prepared, you need to have multiple things available. One, your financials. Where are they? Who are the accounts named in? HMM. You need to have legal documents, because you need to make a decision. Who can make decisions for you? Medically, if you’re unable to very true, who can handle your assets if something happens to you or you’re unable to take care of them? And financially, you need to know where the funds are. HMM. And not only that, if you’re not able to pay your bills, who can step in and help you out? Absolutely and you know, I think about stories of families thought I work with. They don’t even know sometimes what banks. Mom or dad might have five or six accounts. You know they’re having just, you know, thumb through mail and letters and things like that. You know, even if a AM parent is in the hospital and you know they might have had a stroke or something like that, a family member needs to be able to act and if they don’t know where the accounts are, they don’t know where the safety deposit is, a box or anything like that, that can be a const a real challenge right yes, but we need it. If someone is in the hospital, a doctor will not speak to you unless you’re on the hipopform. Right, and very interesting story there is. I went to my Obgyn when the book was first published, version, version one and June or two thousand and thirteen, and she had back surgery. Her daughter was a doctor in Florida. Her son was attorney in Massachusetts and she had complications with the back surgery. When her daughter called the physician, he wouldn’t talk to her. She had forgot to updade her hip afform and that had needs to be updated every year and every physician’s office that you go to absolutely so that’s just a medical form. But then you’ve got your medical directive which you fill out and that tells the doctor who can make decisions for you if you’re unable to make decisions at that time. And it’s just very important that those documents be complete. Hmmm, very true, very true, and and obviously you know, even to the point. I know you know you may not cover this in the book, but you maybe do. It’s like what is the password to get into the bank account, you know on the online or little things like that. Obviously you know we as family members, when we need to when it’s our time, it’s like, what are the things that we need to know? And this is really what your book is all about, isn’t it? Yes, and you talk about passwords. There’s a section on if your parents can give you all the passwords that you have, but you go on your computer, those passwords will not work and you will have to be known. That what your parents best friend was, and for great it’s true. So many people, the parents have the old, older electronics and they get rid of them and then they can’t get into the accounts without a death certificate, power of eternity, trust document stating that you have legal rights to those assets. So you can get a list of passwords, but don’t get rid of their computer or you won’t be able to get it. That’s really, really a good point. You know, you never think about that, because it’s really true. I remember. You’re absolutely right, because when I became power of attorney for my mom, it’s who’s your best friend? Well, luckily I knew my mother’s best friend, but you’re right, that’s exactly what happened. So I remember that that was one of the questions that they asked. But the other one was worth what was the first car you ever drove and I had no clue. What was the first car my mother ever drove? I didn’t remember. Luckily, when I when I went off and then signed up again, signed in again, it asked me a different question than I can answer that one. So that was good. So, Sandy, you know, what can you do as a individual to protect your assets? It you know, when you’re aging and like that. Like you said, it’s for everyone, not even you know, when you’re twenty five years old, you should probably have something like this in place. Tell me some of the steps that you need to make. Okay, well, you need to visit a lawyer and fill out legal documents, and then you have to be sure all the medical documents at your doctor’s office is are filled out. And then, financially, you need to have a list of your assets and someone needs to know where they are. H and as far as the bank ache, you’ve got bank accounts, you may have a mortgage, you may have life insurance. What all your insurance? Where is it? He is it with? What are the account numbers? And many people don’t want to share their information with their children, but that’s not the point is someone needs to know where everything is and a power of attorney is not the answer that you can just because you have power of attorney. It may take thirty days to take effect and you have to physically go to each location with that individual, if they’re alive, to get the power of attorney and the person has to sign the documents with your name on it for the bank accounts. Wow, wow, and that is if you have a trust, which is something I talked about in the book. If you have a trust, it’s so important that you can name who you trust to be your trustee and if you become physically unable to handle your assets or pay your bills, then that trustee can pay your bills at any time because they have access to your accounts, as power as a trustee about account right, and they can use your funds. Great. So we again are talking to Sandy Myerson, who who is written the Book Elder Care Assistance. And where can they purchase this book? Sandy? This book is only available at Amazon and what makes it unique is that it has spreadsheets in it that you can download and fill in the blanks. HMM. And if you are diagnosed with it ailment, where there be cancer, heart disease, the first thing your physician tells you, is to get things in order your emotionally traumatized. Right. And where do you begin? Hm. So I am here to help you with the spreadsheets. If you download them, you can fill them out and have them available, share them with your children or whoever is important to you. And again, the book is only available at Amazon. You know, it’s it’s big font is well, oh, perfect. And you know what’s really great about this whole thing that you’ve put together is right, because nobody’s really a financial genius out there. There’s very few of us that are, and having a guide like that that you can sit down and fill out, not only for your own peace of mind, but also that your family knows that everything is there and you know what to happen, that is such a critical and important thing. So, you know, thank you again for doing something like this, because I know there are thousands of families out there right now that are dealing with this very issue. So tell me a little bit about you know, I know you have a little bed background of how you started this. Just give me a brief overview of what happened. Okay, thirty years ago I was home with my family and I was told my husband had six months to live. I was thirty nine years old and hospice came to the House and asked me four questions. One question one, did I know how to pay the bills? Yes, I paid them regularly. Number two, did I know where the assets were, and I answered yes. Number three, did I know all his doctors? And I said yes, and they told me to name them. Well, I missed a couple. And the fourth question was did I know his prescriptions? I knew the color of the pills, I knew what some of them were. And thirty years ago I created ten of those spreadsheets. Wow, and those spreadsheets have been passed around. My husband died in North Carolina and Daytona Beach, Florida. I’m sorry, I moved to North Carolina and then I moved here. That’s thirty years and I have passed those spreadsheets out whenever someone in their family got sick, uh, Huh, where they’d be a child became handicapped, whatever the reason, I passed out the spreadsheets. And then in June of two thousand and twelve, someone I played tennis with husband had a stroke. She was a vanguished professor at University of Washington. I handed them to her and she called me that evening and told me I needed to write a book and I burst out laughing because I’m a techy, and then someone told me to contact Amazon and the book was created and I’m just so happy that it’s now available. It’s a personal story, but seems that everyone can relate to it and it makes them wake up and say, Oh wow, I need to do this now. Well, and you know there it’s never too soon, like you know, to sit down and it should be. One of the most important things an individual does, if they’re responsible, is to get these things in order and have this kind of information, and it’s so great that you’ve provided such an easy way for people to do that. So, Sandy, again, tell me a little bit about yeah, I know you do also speaking. Is that correct? Yes, I will be happy to speak at any group of ten to twelve people or more, because I want to share what I’ve learned the hard way and help people get themselves organized. Hmmm, and that’s important too. So there’s a lot of senior centers out there that listen to our show or if you go to a local senior senior center, Sandy would be a wonderful resource for you to bring in and learn and, you know, really to invest in her book. Is Pretty Amazing Way to get started, for sure. So, Sandy, how do we reach you and how do we get your book again? Okay, the book is only available at Amazon. It’s called elder care assistance of practical guide covering health, legal and financial considerations. It’s one thousand two hundred and ninety five with the Prim account and it’s in big font. It’s a little book, but it explains every legal document, medical document and financial assets need to be organized. Hum and then you obviously are available again to do speaking. Is that correct? Yes, okay, so you have done is. Do you have anything on the calendar right now that people could potentially do look at? Right now I’m scheduled for some homeowners groups and pump Palm Desert California. Oh well, good for you. Well, when you come back to Seattle, let us know and we will definitely on you know, put the word out for you. Thank you, Sandy. Thank you so much for being on the show today. You’re welcome. Answers for elders radio show with Susan Newman hopes you found this podcast useful in your journey of navigating senior care. Check out more podcast like this to help you find qualified senior care experts and areas of financial, legal, health and wellness and living options. Learn about our radio show, receive our monthly newsletter, receive promotional discounts and meet our experts by clicking on the banner to join the Senior Advocate Network at answers for elders, radiocom. Now there is one place to find the answers for elders.
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Founder and CEO of Answers for Elders, Inc., Suzanne Newman proclaims often, “Caring for my mom was the hardest thing I ever have done, but it was also my greatest privilege.” Following a career of over 25 years in sales, media, and marketing management, Suzanne Newman found herself on a 6-year journey caring for her mother. Her trials and tribulations as a family caregiver inspired an impassioned life mission outside of the corporate world to revolutionize the journey that so many other American families also find themselves on. In 2009, she became the founder and CEO of Answers for Elders, Inc., subsequently hosting hundreds of radio segments and podcasts, as well as authoring her first book. Suzanne and Answers for Elders, Inc. have spent 14 years, and counting, committed to helping families and seniors along their caregiving journeys by providing education, resources, and support. Each week on the Answers for Elders podcast, Suzanne is joined by vetted professional experts in over 65 categories including Health & Wellness, Life Changes, Living Options, Money, Law, and more. Suzanne lives in Edmonds, Washington with her husband, Keith, and their two doodle dogs, Whidbey and Skagit.