Dementia is now our greatest medical challenge, and there are currently no survivors. Of the top ten causes of death in the UK, dementia is the only one without an effective treatment to stop or slow its progression. Only research can change this. Alzheimer’s Research UK is the UK’s leading dementia research charity dedicated to diagnosis, prevention, treatment and cure.
Making plans for the future is vital, especially if you or a loved one are affected by dementia. At Alzheimer’s Research UK, we have highlighted some things to consider.
Is it time you made or updated your Will?
A Will is one of the most important documents in a person’s life and is the only way to ensure your wishes are carried out. It also makes it easier for loved ones to take care of your estate, knowing they are acting on your wishes.
Writing a Will doesn’t have to be complicated
Making a Will is a lot more straightforward than people think. For a simple Will, you should be able to get everything arranged in a single solicitor’s appointment. You’ll just need a rough list of your assets and how you’d like them to be distributed, along with the addresses of your beneficiaries.
It’s sensible to review your Will every five years and after any major life event, such as buying a new house or the birth of a child. Marriage invalidates any previous Will, so you will need to write a new one if you marry or re-marry.
Are you or a loved one affected by dementia?
Having dementia doesn’t necessarily mean you’re unable to write a Will. As long as you can understand the effect of making a Will, the nature and value of your assets, and who will receive those assets, you can still make a Will. Your solicitor will be able to assess whether you have testamentary capacity and may consult a medical professional. It can be wise to have a doctor sign the Will as a witness, as this can protect your estate against any potential issues.
Setting up Powers of Attorney is a good way to ensure someone you trust can make decisions on your behalf if you reach a point in the future where you are no longer able to make decisions for yourself. People often believe they won’t need a Power of Attorney until they are older, however, unforeseen circumstances, such as accidents or illness, can arise so having one in place could protect you in the future.
At Alzheimer’s Research UK, we have put together some information videos and factsheets around some of the questions you might have regarding Wills, Powers of Attorney and planning for future care. You can view these on our website, via the link at the end of this article.
What do gifts in Wills mean to Alzheimer’s Research UK?
Dementia is a devastating condition that can leave people unable to think, move or communicate. However, it is caused by physical diseases, and history has shown us that through medical research, diseases can be overcome.
Our passionate scientists are already making incredible discoveries and with your support, we can turn those discoveries into life-changing preventions and treatments.
Gifts in Wills make one in three of our life-changing research projects possible, developing our understanding of dementia, how to prevent it as well as finding a cure. They offer hope to our children, grandchildren and future generations of a world free from the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia.Last modified: June 10, 2021