When we talk about COVID-19 and seniors… it’s really a whole new world.
When we think about the novel virus COVID-19 and seniors, many of whom are likely retired, we might not think about “business as usual.”
However, for nearly everyone – including the seniors and older adults we typically serve at our elder law and estate and asset protection law firm – “Business as usual…” is a saying that is quickly going by the wayside. It seems as though all the technological inventions and advancements have been preparing the world for this moment. Social media and online meeting tools make it possible for us to exercise ‘social distancing’ yet still see each other.
These tools are so important to businesses as well. My law firm is using digital meeting spaces on a daily basis. And, it seems as though until we flatten the curve of this virus, we will be using these tools for the foreseeable future.
We Are Past The Containment Phase
My understanding is that we have passed the window of opportunity for containing COVID-19. We are now in what is being referred to as the ‘mitigation phase, which is defined as “the action of reducing the severity, seriousness, or painfulness of something.” This is why we are all being asked to stay put.
COVID-19 and Seniors: Stay Home… Whether You Are a Senior Or Not
Those of us who can do our work from home are fortunate. There are many people who simply cannot. Their work depends on them being on location and interacting with people. That activity is being phased out and stopped except in the most necessary circumstances. Supermarkets must keep their doors open so we can have access to food. Doctors must still tend to people who are giving birth and having heart attacks and other illnesses besides COVID-19. But, for those who are healthy, staying home is the best way to stay healthy.
Review Your Will, Establish An Estate Plan
There are those of you out there who have promised to do these things. You might have even put it on your list of New Years’ Resolutions. Well, there has never been a better more motivating time to step up and do what you’ve been wanting to do. Of course, you don’t know if you’re going to get the virus, no one does, but if you do and you have children and loved ones who could benefit, you want to make sure they will.
Be Practical And Be Safe
It’s difficult enough to consider the possibilities of dying at any time, even though we all know that is going to happen to each of us eventually. But, during this historic time, death could come suddenly and swiftly. Knowing you have your wishes expressed legally and knowing that your loved ones will be the recipients of your assets and not the state, is comforting whether you are struck down by COVID-19 this year or you live a long, healthy life and get to revise your estate plan numerous times.
This is not the motivation anyone wants, but it could be the motivation some of you need to take care of business. Let’s just get it done. We have the technology to get your paperwork done at a distance. I know it isn’t the way we are accustomed to doing things, but there is a new normal that will be emerging out of this novel experience. We may as well just dive in and learn as we go. I look forward to helping you take care of that business you’ve been putting aside for far too long.
I hope you and yours are being wise, going out only when necessary to replenish food and/or medicine and that you stay safe and well.