Back in the day when I was growing up, I can still hear my mother saying, ‘If ever there is an emergency go next door to the neighbors.” My parents were big planners and savers also and never lived beyond their means. In later years when I interviewed my mother, I asked her how she budgeted for things and she simply said, ‘I saved half and use the other half to run the household, I never wavered from this formula”. A simple formula none the less one that obviously worked for them. My parents were big planners, always preparing for the rainy day.

The question I pose to you is Does your family have an emergency plan? I am not just referring to having a few months’ worth of cash in a safe place in case of an emergency, but I am referring more to a family emergency plan in general.

Since Thanksgiving is fast approaching, and the assumption is that families will be together in some way shape or form.  I thought I would give you some resources to get your emergency plan together.  I see repeatedly all the things that go wrong because families are not prepared for any emergency that life throws at them.  Many families scramble to find the necessary documents when a parent is hospitalized or dies both expectedly and unexpectedly. This thanksgiving when you are surrounded by family, have these discussions and put this plan in place.”   It most definitely is a difficult and many times awkward conversation to have, but a conversation that needs to take place nonetheless.
For our families that are in their forties raising young children and adolescents, do not wait till you are older to put plans in place to do it. Someone in the family must take the now, don’t keep putting g it off, implementation of a plan will make things so much easier later on. You can update these plans along the way if needed.  In regard to elderly parents, it may be a simple conversation as to where the papers are that will be necessary to make a medical and or financial decisions later on when emergencies take place.

When we are busy living, we never think about dying tomorrow is not promised to any of us! I believe Covid -19 has shown us all that one never knows what ahead, and the unexpected can change your life forever. Being prepared just makes it that little bit easier on those left behind. Here is a simple guide for you to read through a personalized to for your family’s needs when considering where to start. Cash or funds for 6 months at minimum on hand to pay your bills and living expenses. All finalized documents in a safe and secure place ( Health Care Power of attorneys, Will, Trusts, Advance Directives, DNR (PLOST ) forms, Life Insurance papers, dd214 papers, ss cards, dL, state id, Insurance papers, passwords to banks and or computer-stored items copies and or originals of passports, etc. Spare Keys to home, properties. box, safety deposit box, and or any other storage you have. 4 For seniors or sick children/ adolescents with continual health challenges or diseases. Current medication lists, health conditions and or medical conditions and or allergies, a packed bag with a spare set of clothing and or PJs, spare cell phone charger, toiletries, razor, etc. This pertains to the elderly, most especially if they live alone. This bad should be packed and left in a convenient closet to have on hand for the person or first responders coming to the home.  A flashlight, case of water, a battery-powered radio, and blanket for storage in every basement, crawl space for power outages and inclement weather conditions.  A small generator. Keep in mind that putting one’s final plans in order is not a simple thing and takes months and months of preparation and a good attorney. This process takes time but should never be put off because you do not have time to do it. Having your plans in order will eliminate many headaches in the future when you may be thrust into an emergency situation and disabled at every junction to get the help needed.

For those who read last month’s article on the bank and check fraud here is an update. The local branch manager reached out to her manager and asked him if she could “Take the hit to cover the cost of my check against her branches profit numbers at year end “I was refunded my own money, however as I stated last month the initial response and lack of follow up highlighted to me it was time to switch banks.