In a personal and confidential review, I’ll analyze all the pros and cons of these options with you. The most common long term care solutions people consider, other than LTC insurance, include:
It’s wonderful to have a spouse and to have plans to be there for each other. Having Long-Term Care insurance can be a wonderful “love gift” to the care giving spouse. Giving care over a period of time often takes a heavy toll on the caregiver’s health due to the physical and emotional strains, lack of sleep, the toll of lifting and moving, worries and cares, unending stress, the financial drain, etc. Remember you and your spouse may be many years older than you are now when one or both need LTC. You may be able to do a lot of care giving today, but can you guarantee you will be able to be a caregiver many years from now, over a long term? Under severe duress and often with deep pangs of guilt, one often has to eventually place their loved one into a nursing home or other care facility. There are better options.
One more thing: the odds are extremely high that one spouse will predecease the other. What happens then to the surviving spouse? Who will care for him or her?
Again, it’s wonderful to have children you can rely on. Many of our grown children live too far away or have jobs and commitments that would make care giving for a long time difficult, even impossible. Usually the entire burden falls to one adult child, often a daughter. Sibling resentment is common and can become intense as the care-giving adult “child” resents the other siblings for not doing more. LTC insurance can be a wonderful source of help, respite, support and a great relief plus avoid a lot of sibling resentment. When the time comes to actually do the care giving, many adult children find out they are not prepared for the commitment of time, for the toll on their health and marriage, for the costs, and much more. Having LTC insurance can be a wonderful “love gift” to our loved ones. It allows the adult children to do the “things of the heart”, the things our children want to do and should do. One more thing: many of us would rather not have a tough LTC situation without outside assistance be the legacy we leave our children. LTC insurance could be a great “love gift”.
This is certainly an option for many people, especially the poor and destitute. Keep in mind that Medicaid laws vary from State to State. Cutbacks in funding are frequent. Plus, one has to “spend down” to government-defined poverty levels to even qualify for Medicaid assistance. Most people on Medicaid end up in nursing homes, rather than care facilities they may have preferred, due to the fact Medicaid seems easier to access in nursing homes than in alternative care places. There is currently a “five-year look back period” on monetary transfers, so it’s not easy to shift funds to avoid Medicaid. Will Medicaid even be functioning as we know it today, ten to thirty years from now? Also consider the fact that many Assisted Living Facilities do not accept Medicaid funding at all. The few which do accept a limited number of Medicaid beds often do not have any Medicaid beds available.
Perhaps you can self-insure the high risk and costs associated with a long-term care situation. I would like to discuss this personally with you. Having LTC insurance allows you to quit sitting on so much money “just in case”. Let me explain on the phone why a good percentage of my clients are very comfortable financially but still have purchased LTC insurance. LTC insurance means you have a PLAN in place. Just having money is not a plan. Having LTC insurance gives you more than just money to pay the costs. You also get Care coordination, for example. Let me explain that to you on the phone. Is it the best “risk management” strategy to have? There are many factors to consider if this is one of your options. Call me. There are alternative or even “hybrid” solutions we can discuss.