Three ways to pro­tect your re­tire­ment nest egg

The Hamilton Spectator - - YOUNG AT HEART -

You’ve planned well for your re­tire­ment, sav­ing your money and in­vest­ing it wisely. Now, your next chal­lenge is to pro­tect your sav­ings by mak­ing sure your fi­nances are han­dled wisely as you grow older.

Re­search tells us that fi­nan­cial de­ci­sion-mak­ing can be one of the first ac­tiv­i­ties that peo­ple may have trou­ble with as they age. It’s also true that se­niors are fre­quently tar­geted for fi­nan­cial scams, ex­ploita­tion, and abuse, some­times by strangers but too of­ten by care­givers and fam­ily mem­bers. Pro­tect your re­tire­ment nest egg with these ex­pert tips.

1. While you’re still fully able to han­dle your own af­fairs, as­sign a fi­nan­cial power of at­tor­ney to some­one you trust so that there can be no ques­tion as to who you want mak­ing de­ci­sions for you in the event that your abil­i­ties start to fal­ter and talk to them about your wi­hes to en­sure you’re on the same page

2. Let your fi­nan­cial ad­vi­sor know who your other pro­fes­sional ad­vi­sors are, such as your lawyer or ac­coun­tant. In­tro­duce your fi­nan­cial ad­vi­sor to your power of at­tor­ney and any other trusted fam­ily mem­bers or friends so that they can con­nect if it be­comes nec­es­sary to pro­tect you.

If you think your loved one might be los­ing their abil­ity to make sound fi­nan­cial de­ci­sions, speak to them about in­volv­ing their power of at­tor­ney or other trusted con­tact in their fi­nan­cial dis­cus­sions. Watch for mem­ory loss; changes in abil­ity to do ev­ery­day math; con­fu­sion about time and place; missed ap­point­ments; changes in per­sonal ap­pear­ance; mood or be­havioural swings, such as in­creased pas­siv­ity, anx­i­ety, or ag­gres­sion; and tak­ing longer to com­plete fi­nan­cial tasks.

Not ev­ery­one will ex­pe­ri­ence these chal­lenges, but they’re com­mon enough that we should take steps to pro­tect our­selves and to do what we can to pro­tect friends and fam­ily mem­bers. (NC)

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