70% Will Need It
Nov 27, 2016 12:53PM
● By Colleen Callahan
November was Long Term Care Awareness Month. I attended a day-long seminar that included an elder law attorney, psychiatrist, a lecture regarding a new California law for long-term care policies, and a discussion addressing the future design for insurance policies.
The speakers agreed that planning and saving for long-term care expenses must begin in our 50s. It is important because the planning must start while people are healthy. One eye-opening fact is that 70% of those who reach age 65 will need some form of long-term care assistance during their lifetimes. It is not really a matter of if; it is a matter of when.
The elder law attorney and the psychiatrist warn family members to watch for signs of dementia and elder abuse and to be suspicious of “new friends” of the elderly. Seniors are vulnerable, and there is no shortage of people looking to profit at the expense of the vulnerable.
As we age, it is crucial to have a plan and communicate that plan to children, relatives, and trusted advisors. Parents, talk to your children and keep them informed of your wishes, health, and plans. Be ready to ask for and accept help. It is understandably an uncomfortable time, but early planning and discussions make executing the plan easier on everyone.
Baby boomers, begin planning now. Remember, if you want an insurance policy, you must qualify, so apply while you are healthy. Websites like Longtermcare.gov and Genworth.com offer guidance and information on the cost of care in your area. Long-term care insurance policies have benefits that cover care in a facility, care at home, help with costs for care coordination, and even home modification. I can help you get started with the planning. Please call me when you are ready.