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Mother’s Day Special - Helping Parents Prepare for Their Future

Another oldie but goodie from January 2011 made more timely by the celebration of Mother's Day today. Our Moms (and Dads) deserve our attention when it comes to their potential long term care needs.

There is a very good chance that you orsomeone you know is taking care of elderly parents now or looking at thatpossibility in the near future. In 2008 a USA TODAY/ABC News/Gallup Poll ofbaby boomers found that 41% who had a living parent were providing care forthem — either financial help, personal care or both — and 8% of boomers saidtheir parents had moved in with them.

Of those who were not caring for anaging parent, 37% said they expected to do so in the future. About half saidthey were concerned about being able to provide such care.

 If financial planning and long termcare planning have not been done previous to the need for care, the burdenfalls on the caregiving family member. Decisions about how care will be paidfor, who will be responsible for managing the estate as well as how the longterm care will be given can cause stress and contention among family members.

It is best for parents and all family members to be involved in planning forfuture financial needs. The financial resources being used today could changedrastically with the occurrence of a stroke, illness or onset of dementia. Inorder to plan financially for long term care, you need to know what the costsare now and what they will be in the future.

Every year MetLife does a survey oflong term care costs. Their 2010 survey shows that the average daily rate forprivate nursing home is $229 which is up from $219 in 2009. Assisted livingmonthly base rate cost rose to $3,293 in 2010 from $3131 in 2009. Home health aidesaverage $21 an hour.

Planning financial needs can be verydifficult, considering you do not know when long term care will be required orhow long it will be needed. Staying in the home for care will require professionalhome care assistance, travel accommodations to doctor appointments, help withshopping, meals, medical supplies and medication and possibly a 24-hourattendant. Even if a family member is doing most of the care, in most cases professionalcare will eventually be required or a move to a nursing home facility will benecessary.

When evaluating present income andassets consider how they would work for future needs. Consider the following:

  • Care options
  • Long Term Care Costs
  • Long Term Care Insurance
  • Home Care Costs
  • Medicaid Planning
  • VA Benefits & Planning
  • Legal Documents – Estate Planning 

For more information on this and otherestate planning subjects, contact IdahoEstate Planning and schedule aconsultation. Remember,good planning is no accident.

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