FOUR PRINCIPLES OF LONG TERM CARE PLANNING
There are four principles that apply to long-term care planning:
Knowledge is the key to success.
Professional help is crucial in saving time, money and stress.
Professional help can assure that caregiver stress is reduced and care options are expanded.
Success is assured through working with an elder law attorney.
Knowledge Is the Key to Success
Understanding in advance, care settings and when and why they are appropriate will result in the most satisfactory experience for the caregiver, the care recipient and the family. Understanding how government programs work helps with the final decision-making process.
Prior knowledge: prevents crisis planning; will save money; will save precious time; will aid the caregiver; and opens the door to other options.
Professional Help Is Crucial in Saving Time, Money and Stress
Long term care services are complicated and expensive. For the majority of Americans, eldercare is a do-it-yourself process. This approach is wrong. Using professional care advisers is the most cost effective and efficient way to provide help for a loved one. Hiring professional advisers to help with long term care is no different than using a professional to help with other complex issues. Does do-it-yourself make sense in the following examples?
Sam has a 2007 SUV. He decides to purchase the $600 service manual and invest thousands of dollars in test equipment and in special tools to repair the vehicle himself. He feels he will save money by doing this instead of paying for expensive dealer repair services.
Sally is involved in a complicated court proceeding. She decides to represent herself and invests countless hours in researching legal documents and reading books on how to represent herself in court.
Jim runs a business with 100 employees. He has no experience in accounting or taxes but he decides his accountant and tax person is too expensive and he will invest the time and money in software to do it himself.
Even if a do-it-yourselfer has enough time for research, that person is unlikely to have the experience in handling care situations that a professional long-term care expert would have. Experience only comes from dealing with countless laws, public benefit policies, and financial scenarios.
Using the expertise of a certified elder law attorney is likely to result in dollar savings many times larger than the cost of hiring the expert.
An Elder Law Attorney Can Identify Care Options and Reduce Stress
A Certified Elder Law Attorney is educated and experienced to understand possible funding options that may be available for quality long-term care and how to qualify for them. Some common funding optionsinclude:
Long-Term Care Insurance
Cashing Out Of a Principal Residence through Sale or Buyback Arrangement Retirement Savings Accounts
Life Insurance Arrangements
A number of asset saving strategies may be employed when at-home or nursing home care is needed, including:
Rearranging Insurance Plans
Private Caregiver Agreements
Family Shared Care Commitments
If you or your family contemplate the need for long-term care of a loved one, call us as early as possible to begin the process of identifying options and planning for the resources needed for that care. You will be glad you did.