Do You Have a Long-Term Elder Care Strategy?

September 04, 2017

It may be difficult to acknowledge the physical and financial challenges of growing older; however, it is essential to implement a thorough plan for long-term care. This article is designed to help you understand some of the challenges you may face so that you may develop a plan before the onset of a health or financial crisis. If you need legal assistance developing your long-term care strategy and estate plan contact your LegalShield provider law firm.Use a team approach to long-term care planning. Take the initiative to get everyone together who will be involved in your long-term care. Gathering close friends and family members together will make the challenges seem less daunting to any one individual. Determine who may be best suited to help with particular issues. One friend or family member may be particularly good with finances while another may be better at dealing with medical concerns or household issues. Discuss your wishes and your goals for the future. Do you want to live independently, find an assisted living community that meets your needs or live with a family member? Consider all options and rank them by their desirability and feasibility. Anticipate how a serious health or financial change might alter your plans and develop a contingency plan. Listen and consider feedback from your team; while the final decision is your own, it is important to consider the opinions of those who will help with your care.Review your finances carefully. You may not be comfortable discussing finances with everyone, but it is important to review your long-term care finances with someone you trust. Prepare a comprehensive summary of assets and benefits, including all bank accounts, savings accounts, CDs and other assets together with all benefits for which you are or may be eligible. Review your insurance coverage. Health and disability insurance does not cover long-term elder care. Long-term care insurance can be impossible to obtain or prohibitively expensive if you are already sick. It pays to plan and purchase a policy early. Carefully review the terms of your current coverage. Your LegalShield provider law firm can help review the terms and exclusions of your policies.Determine your eligibility for government benefits. Do research to find out which benefits you may be entitled to receive, including life and health insurance, government assistance programs, private pension and benefit plans. Make sure you receive the maximum benefits to which you are entitled. The best thing you can do is to arm yourself with knowledge – take advantage of your LegalShield membership and contact your provider firm to find out what benefits your state or province provides. Make sure your last will and testament, power of attorney and living will are in place and up to date. Your estate plan will help you control distribution of assets and help you give legal authority of financial and medical decisions to someone you trust. Begin the process by completing the LegalShield will questionnaire, which you can obtain by calling LegalShield or your provider law firm. You may also log into the LegalShield members only website or use the LegalShield app (Android or iPhone) to download or print a copy of the questionnaire. If you have any questions while completing your questionnaire call your provider firm and speak with an attorney.