Long-term care is not a one-size-fits-all service. There are a number of different long-term care options available depending on your health, finances, and other factors.
Everyone approaching retirement age needs to consider the potential expense of long-term care. You may not know when you’ll need it or for how long, but you’ll be better off planning ahead, rather than waiting until you need help to start thinking about your options.
Types of Long-Term Care
If you have family members that can care for you, consider yourself lucky. Many seniors don’t have this option because their children have moved away or have other responsibilities that they can’t give up.
Even if your family members are willing to help out, there may come a point where you need medical attention that requires further help. You’ll need to consider your other options at that point.
Home health aides are a good option for people that just need a little help, but don’t have family nearby. You may have the flexibility to choose how many hours per day or week your health aide visits. However, if you need someone with you at all times, this may not be your best choice.
Assisted-living facilities are more expensive, and nursing homes can cost even more. For many seniors, these are their best options because they have help available around the clock. But the cost of these services can be daunting.
Paying for Long-Term Care
Long-term care insurance requires you to pay premiums and provides coverage once you need long-term care. Generally, your premiums will be lower and you’ll have more coverage options if you buy long-term care insurance when you are younger and healthier. Every policy is different and may have limits, so shop carefully.
Medicare does not cover long-term care expenses, but may cover a short period of nursing home care when specific conditions are met. Medicaid can cover some long-term care costs, but has asset and income limitations. Your choice of care may also be limited if you use Medicaid to pay for long-term care.
Finally, you can pay out-of-pocket for long-term care costs. You may have to use more than one of these payment methods at various times.
Each person’s long-term care plan will be unique. Consult an estate planning attorney to develop a long-term care strategy that works for you.
At King Law Office, we understand that your estate plan should be designed to fit your objectives and family situation. Our goal is to help guide you through this process and listen to your concerns. Come visit us at one of our office locations, including Charlotte, Shelby, and Greer.