How To Plan For Your Elder Years
May 21, 2012 § Leave a comment
If we were to ask an someone what their most important concerns for aging are, we might get answers like maintaining good health, retaining independence and having enough money.
To address these concerns or wishes and maintain the quality of life wanted in your elder years, it is necessary to do some preplanning. While many of us prepare for unexpected happenings by purchasing health or property insurance, there is one often overlooked life event that many people overlook and that is the need for long term care in our later years.
The majority of the American public does not plan for the crisis of needing eldercare. The lack of planning also has an adverse effect on the older person’s family, with sacrifices made in time, money, and family lifestyles.
Here are some facts from longtermcarelink.net which emphasize why planning for long term care is important:
- The population of the “very old” (older than age 85) is the fastest growing group in America.
- This population is at highest risk for needing care. (Statistical abstract of the United States, 2008, population)
- Medical science is preventing early sudden deaths, which means living longer with impaired health and greater risk of needing long term care.
- The Alzheimer’s Association estimates the risk of Alzheimer’s or dementia beyond age 85 to be about 46% of that population.
- It is estimated that 6 out of 10 people will need long term care sometime during their lifetime.
- Children are moving far away from parents or parents move away during retirement making long distance care giving difficult or impossible.
- Government programs already stretched thin for long term care services will experience even greater stress on available funds in the future.
One of the important things for planning is how to maintain your lifestyle as you age. Will you be healthy enough to complete tasks like maintaining your home, preparing your own meals, grocery shopping and driving? These types tasks are non-medical and will have to be paid for by you or maybe you will be lucky enough to have a friend or family member provide these services for free on a regular basis.
Government programs, in most cases, will not pay for this kind of care. It is estimated that 80% of all long term care is non-medical, with 90% of that care provided in the home. It is most likely that your long term care will begin with home care.
It is wise to plan now how you will pay for care when it is needed. In evaluating your future income you may find it necessary to add some resources such as long term care Insurance to pay for assisted living or nursing home costs. Long term care insurance must be purchased while you are younger and healthy. Failing health, stroke or other aging issues will not allow you to qualify for this insurance.
Consider sitting down with an attorney who will help you create a long term care plan. Using a professional to create this plan will help relieves stress, reduce family conflict, and saves time and money in the long run.
If you need guidance in creating a long term care plan, The Law Office of Dawn M. Weekly, PC is here to help. We are located in Sandwich, Illinois and focus on elder law and Life Care Planning for clients. Our office may be reached by calling 815-570-2334.
Every day of every week, Weekly Law is there for you.