Chipman Mazzucco Emerson LLC

Planning for long-term care

Even though many people in Connecticut believe that they will never need long-term care, the issue is more prevalent now than ever before given how health care costs have been going up lately. And, as touchy as the subject may be, people need to prepare for it beforehand so that when the time comes they are financially and emotionally ready.

There are many reasons people choose to believe that they won't need to plan for long-term care. Some think that these expenses will be covered by Medicare, whereas others might believe that their children will look after them. Alternatively, some people think that by gifting away their assets, they will qualify for Medicaid, and some just refuse to believe that they will ever be in a physical condition where they will need someone else's help.

Unfortunately, all these perceptions are misguided, something many baby boomers are starting to learn the hard way. First of all, seven out of every ten retired people will need to get long-term care, and the average cost of nursing is around $7,500 a month. In addition, Medicare doesn't even cover long-term care, and children are unable to look after their parents more often than not.

Fortunately, with a little preparation, people don't have to worry about what will happen to them as they near retirement. To begin with, they can begin planning for the future by taking inventory of their current assets along with their spending needs, both current and future. They should also aim to figure out how much long-term care insurance they may need as well as the type of policy. Furthermore, should they decide to have a living will, a document that details their health care directives in the event of being unable to communicate them, they need to decide who will be responsible for carrying out their wishes. Along with all of this, they might benefit from reaching out to an experienced elder law attorney for advice and counsel.

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