In terms of valuable life skills, it’s good to know how important (read: expensive) decisions are financed. We’re all familiar with the need to buy, or rent, a place to live. We know the responsibilities of purchasing or leasing a new car. And for those with children, we are taught to help save for their college education since their birth.
But what about long term care? Most people are unfamiliar with the answer to this one. Even if they do have an answer, they may not realize that it can be different depending on the type of care needed, the location in which the care is received, etc.
With this in mind, the following is a comprehensive list of the various ways in which most long term care is financed:
Retirement Income- Retirement savings are another thing we are taught to save for over the course of many years. However, long term care costs can often exceed retirement income, especially for single people, widows, or widowers.
Liquidation of Assets- While this is an option, these assets otherwise would be available for use by the healthier spouse or for eventual inheritance.
Medicaid- This is a means-tested government program that provides health care and long term care to the poor. Sometimes, when there is a desire to get on Medicaid while maintaining assets, the practice of artificial impoverishment (aka Medicaid planning) is deployed.
Volunteer Labor (Unpaid)- This is often completed by adult children, many of whom must curtail their careers and/or compromise care of their own children to provide care to parents.
Long Term Care Insurance- These policies usually pay for care in any setting, allowing families to delay or totally avoid the need to deploy the options above.
However, no matter how many professionals recommend considering purchasing long term care insurance by middle age, the fact remains that most people deny the topic as little more than a fleeting thought until something happens.
Usually the denial breakthrough takes the form of an immediate need for care. Or the realization (sometimes via a dreaded diagnosis) that care will be eventually inevitable. It’s then that the family discovers the long term care insurance corollary to the familiar tale of “banks not wanting to lend money except to those who don’t need it”. It’s then that long term care insurance is not available…at any price.
Your choices and the implications those choices impose upon those you love very much depend on whether planning is done in advance, or, at the moment care is needed. While it is not accurate to say that there’s no such thing as last-minute long term care planning, it is accurate to say that last-minute planning can be much more difficult and painful, with the most desirous choice of private long term care insurance no longer on the table.
Overall, this kind of transparency is good, especially when it compels thoughtful action. Take a look now at what care costs in your area, as well as exactly what insurance plans, at what costs, can be used to mitigate or eliminate the financial hardship of long term care.
After all, it’s transparently obvious that long term care insurance is clearly the better choice!
Contact Baygroup Insurance at http://www.baygroupinsurance.com/forms/contact-us or call us at 410-557-7907 for more information.