I recently read an article in the New York Times (read article here: http://nyti.ms/Kp9yct) about a study using Psychedelic Drugs to help patients cope with facing death as the result of a life-ending diagnosis, like cancer. In the article it indicated that these end-of-life researchers only included otherwise healthy patients, those with no indication of mental illness, in the study.
These drugs are also being examined as treatment for alcoholism and other addictions. While I can see the advantages of such treatment for those facing the end of their lives due to grave illnesses, it also makes me very aware of how this might affect the ability for someone to consider and finalize their estate planning needs at a time when they are not only facing their own demise, but while under the influence of psychedelic drugs.
Could this open up their decisions to scrutiny after their death? Even though they are otherwise considered of sound mind, does this open the door for others to challenge a person’s Will or other estate planning functions finalized after such diagnosis, and while using psychedelic drugs.
I am an advocate for putting your affairs in order early on, long before you might be facing something like this, but the reality is, even if plans had been made, depending upon the individual situation, such a diagnosis could cause someone to rethink or alter their plans.
It seems like we would need to take some sort of extra steps during this process to make sure we can forego any challenges that could or would be made to change your final wishes. I’m not exactly sure what that might look like, how we could provide verification of your ‘sound’ mind at such a time.
What do you think? Leave your comments or questions below and expand the discussion!
Patricia Annino is a sought after speaker and nationally recognized authority on women and estate planning. She educates and empowers women to value themselves and their contributions in order to ACCOMPLISH GREAT THINGS in the world – and in so doing PROTECT THEMSELVES, those they love, and the organizations they care about. Annino recently released an updated version of her successful book, Women and Money: A Practical Guide to Estate Planning to include recent changes in the laws that govern how we protect our assets during and beyond our lifetime. To download Annino’s FREE eBook, Estate Planning 101 visit, http://www.patriciaannino.com.