In Perspectives

Over the last month or so I have been helping a close family member adjust to life in an assisted living arrangement.  This has become necessary after a long battle against kidney disease and related complications, all exacerbated by significant short term memory loss.  She had surgery yesterday to address ongoing medical challenges and in her diminished capacity, she had to rely entirely on my wife and I to help her make decisions and to communicate with medical professionals.  Thankfully, she had granted each of us the ability to make medical decisions through a properly executed Durable Power of Attorney for Healthcare.  As we progressed through the day, I found myself thinking about the importance of the DPOA for Healthcare and what a nightmare it must be for the families of those who have not addressed this and other estate planning issues ahead of time.

During the days leading up to the surgery, the time and place were both rescheduled several times. While traveling Up North four days before the surgery, I found out that all of the pre-surgical preparation had not been completed, nor was I made aware of it.  Unfortunately, it had been discussed with the patient, who was not able to follow through on the requirements.

Throughout the day of the surgery, it was delayed several times.  These delays resulted in many conversations with doctors, nurses, aides, social workers and others; which all had to be handled by me and my wife.  After the surgery, the medical professionals needed assistance that the patient simply could not provide, which again became a part of our role as the holders of the DPOA for Healthcare.  We would not have been able to assist with many of these items if we did not have the proper documentation authorizing us to do so.  Our assistance continues during recovery as we work with skilled nursing care and others to ensure a solid recovery.

My purpose in putting this experience in writing is not to make you feel sorry for us, but rather to remind everyone of the importance of developing a plan for your medical and financial affairs before it is too late.  Had our family member not done so, this past week would have been even more challenging than it was and I have no doubt that the outcome would have been much worse.  Please keep in mind that this type of planning applies to every adult.  My eighteen year old son is heading off to college this fall and without having the proper documentation in place, we will not be able to communicate with healthcare professionals should he get sick or injured.  For anyone who has been the parent of a college freshman, you know how this would turn out!  And what about you?  Does your family, or someone else you trust, know your wishes and have they been given the power to make choices if you are unable?

I urge you to consider your circumstances and make sure you have adequately planned for the day when you cannot make your own decisions.  When that day arrives, you will need someone you trust to make medical decisions and financial decisions.  Addressing it in advance will allow you to choose who is in control and save significant frustration for your family and caregivers.  If you need help getting started, please give us a call and we can steer you in the right direction.

Legacy Trust and Your Right to Financial Privacy

At Legacy Trust we have established policies and practices that respect the financial privacy of all individuals who use our trust company. We believe it is critical to comply with the laws and regulations designed to secure your financial privacy. Your relationship with us as our client is very important to us, and we want you to understand our policies and practices about handling your information.

This Policy applies to you – This Policy applies to our relationships with individual clients who inquire about or obtain products or services from us for personal, family and household purposes.

Strict security measures – We take the security of information very seriously. We have established security standards and procedures to prevent access to client information. We maintain physical, electronic and procedural safeguards to guard client information.

Limited employee access – We have established procedures to limit employee access to information to only those employees with a business reason for accessing such information. We educate our employees about the importance of confidentiality and client privacy. We take appropriate disciplinary measures to enforce employee responsibilities regarding client information.

Why we collect information – We collect information about you to:

  • accurately identify you;
  • protect and administer your records, accounts and funds;
  • help us design or improve our products and services;
  • understand your financial needs;
  • save you time when you apply for new products and services; offer you quality products and services; and comply with certain laws and regulations;

We collect information – We collect and maintain your personal information so that we can provide investment management and other services to you. The types and categories of information that we collect and maintain about you include:

  • Information we receive from you to open an account or provide investment advice or other services to you (such as your home address, social security number, telephone, financial information and investment objectives).
  • Information that we generate to service your account or from our transactions with you (such as account statements and other financial information).
  • Information on your transactions with nonaffiliated third parties.

We have established procedures so that the financial information we collect is accurate, current and complete. We are committed to work with you to promptly correct any inaccurate information.

Our selective sharing of information – In order for us to provide investment management and other services to you, we do disclose your personal information in very limited instances, which include:

  • Disclosures to nonaffiliated companies as permitted by law, including those who help us service your account (such as providing account information to brokers and custodians).
  • Other limited disclosures as permitted by law, for example, required reports to government entities.

We do not share your information with third parties for marketing purposes. We do not sell your information.

Former clients – If you end your relationship with us, we will continue to adhere to the privacy policies and practices described in this notice.


Important Information About Procedures For Opening A New Account

To help the government fight the funding of terrorism and money laundering activities, Federal law requires all financial institutions to obtain, verify and record information that identifies each person who opens an account.

What this means for you: When you open an account, we will ask for your name, address, date of birth and other information that will allow us to identify you. We may also ask to see your driver’s license or other identifying documents.

We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause; however, federal law prohibits us from waiving these requirements.

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