Some are aware that having an estate plan means they can have their assets distributed after they pass to who they wish. If anything, most people who even have a plan created are most concerned with protecting their loved ones financially. However, estate planning is not just planning for what happens after you pass.
Just as it is important to plan for the future (i.e., your passing), it is also important to plan for your future while you are still here. That said, even if you don’t care about creating a trust or a will, having an estate plan is still important. This plan can also help make your future clearer when it comes to any nursing or assisted living care you may need if incapacity or specific medical ailments come about.
But how do you know if you will require care in the future? Well, you may not. But 45% of women and 30% of men are at risk for needing nursing care in their upcoming years, even just short-term. Do you have the finances to be paying for your own care?
How an Estate Plan Can Benefit Your Future Care
Apart from helping you create a will, trust, power of attorney, and other legal documents, an estate planning attorney can provide you with a plan that also includes long-term care.
This long-term care plan can help you age comfortably by helping you to assess your needs, decide on care choices, and plan ahead the financial part of your potential long-term care. Long-term planning is important in that the cost of long-term care often comes as a surprise if and when long-term care is needed.
Without knowing your plan, things can get complicated quickly. You may not even get your long-term care wishes met if you don’t have a plan set in place. Planning how you will receive and finance your long-term care is important now while you still have your health.
Paying For Your Nursing Home Bill
Even if you think Medicare, Medicaid, insurance, and/or VA benefits will help back up your nursing care bills, there may still be out-of-pocket expenses to pay. But unfortunately for you, there is nothing affordable about nursing care, unless you have a favorable bank balance or incredible insurance.
In fact, 40% of nursing home bills are paid for via personal savings or assets. That number is much too high for care that is already expensive. It isn’t fair for elderly retirees as they, on average, only bring in about $31,742 a year while nursing caring is averaged at $43,536 a year for a basic, single bedroom in a nursing facility.
In the end, Government programs only pay an average of 16% of your long-term nursing care. (This total is more than any other source of paid care. In this country, 70% of all care provided is the uncompensated care provided by the family.) On top of that, they will only pay for your care in specific instances. Some programs may even only offer short-term coverage. That said, you cannot rely on these programs alone for paying your nursing bill. You need to find a solution for how you will pay and if you can even afford to pay out of pocket.
But with a long-term care plan, these expenses won’t come as a surprise to you. You’ll already have an idea of how you’ll be funding your nursing or assisted living care.
Creating Your Plan Today
Seeing that there are cons to not having an estate plan, including when it comes to knowing how you will be paying for nursing care, you may decide to start your plan soon. This would be a great move.
Being without an estate plan, especially when there are children in the picture, is risky. The longer you go without one, the more you potentially take your own power away for future care as well as protecting your loved ones once you pass.
But you can start the process of creating your estate plan virtually right away. If any changes come about between now and the future, you can always review and amend your plan to your current standpoint in life. The important thing to remember is that it is never to soon to begin estate planning.
Contact our Idaho Estate Planning office today for more information on estate planning.