• From the Desk Of

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    01/12/2022

    The Reality of Not Pre-Planning for Long-Term Care 

    Charlene, a widow is 92 years young. She lives a simple life. She never worked or drove a car. She raised 3 children and was happy to be a grandmother and great grandmother. She was active and loved having her hair and nails done at the salon.

    Six weeks ago, Charlene broke her hip. The hip was replaced, and Charlene went to rehabilitative center covered under her Medicare Part C plan. Her family thought, Charlene would be there for a few weeks and then would be released home. Unfortunately, a few weeks into her stay, Charlene complained of pain in her heel. After x-rays it was determined that she had a fractured heel. Charlene was now bed bound, unable to put weight on her leg, perform her activities of daily living and to continue rehab.

    She was transferred to the hospital to treat an infection that developed from her being bed bound. She was in the hospital for 10 days. The doctor gave orders that Charlene needed skilled nursing care, since she was unable to perform her activities of daily living. Skilled nursing care for personal care is not covered under Medicare. Her family would have to apply for Medicaid.

    Charlene’s family started working with the social worker at the hospital to find a bed for her in a skilled nursing facility. January in Florida is also called “snow-bird” season. Just as our restaurants and roads are overflowing with visitors so are our skilled nursing facilities. There were no Medicaid-approved beds for Charlene in the county she lived in. There was a bed about 90 minutes away in a neighboring county.

    Charlene’s family is devastated and overwhelmed. This entire situation has become so stressful and caused friction between her children. No one wants Charlene to go to a skilled nursing facility, yet no one has the financial means to pay for home care on a 24/7 basis which is what Charlene requires. Now, her family has the extra burden of having to drive 90 minutes each way to see her.

    By not having a long-term care plan in place, Charlene and her family were left with little choice. They had no options on where she would receive care and by whom.

    Have a plan. Oftentimes, that plan includes long-term care insurance – however even for those clients that are not good candidates for insurance – they still need a plan of action should they become disabled. Pre-planning with long-term care insurance is one of the most affordable solutions. However, if you are beyond the pre-planning stage and are crisis-planning, it’s important to work with an Elder Attorney familiar with your state’s Medicaid rules. For more information, please call Sandie Stanley at 407-949-6722.

    01/04/2021

    Dear Friends and Clients

    We are living through some very challenging times, and we at LTC Advisors want to do everything to help you stay safe and healthy.  Having said that we also recognize that an unprecedented number of people are turning 65 in 2021 and they will want help to find answers for their Medicare questions.

    In order to be of service, we are offering to conduct appointments remotely if you would like to stay at home and avoid coming to the office.  It would involve you being online so we can share our computers with you and, on the phone, so we can have the same robust discussion we would have in the office.

    If you do not have a computer, we would agree to meet in the office with the assurance that we are constantly disinfecting every surface that has been touched.  Also, with the building closed you will minimize the risk of meeting other people.  However, we do advise that a remote appointment would be better for all.

    In addition to remote appointments, we are back to in-person appointments as well. You can call and reserve a time now: 407-949-6722.

    Please let us know what we can do to help you and please reach out with any questions.

    06/23/2020

    Your hidden retirement risk: long-term care

    You have spent years carefully working and planning so that you have enough income for a comfortable retirement. You may think your retirement savings are protected — but, have you ever considered what might happen if you or your spouse required long-term care?

    The cost of long-term care services, whether they are provided in the home, at a community facility or in a nursing home, may not be covered under major medical plans or Medicare, and can be a threat to your retirement savings. Planning for long-term care can help you manage this risk and help give you more choices and more control over the care you receive.

    Benefits of talking about long-term care

    Nobody wants to think about losing their independence and having to rely on others for care. But, talking about, and planning for, long-term care is important because there is a good chance you will need long-term care services as some point in your life. In fact, about 70 percent of people over age 65 will require some care at some point in their lives, and the likelihood of needing care increases as you age, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

    And, while long-term care is often associated with the effects of aging, it may be needed at any time, due to an accident or illness. Some conditions that might require long-term care include stroke, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease or dementia.

    Talking about long-term care is also important because the cost of long-term care services often exceeds what the average person can pay from income and other resources, particularly in retirement. Consider this: The projected national average cost for five years of long-term care 30 years from now is over $1.9 million, according to the John Hancock Insurance Long-Term Care Calculator.

    Keep in mind that your retirement may be significantly longer than that of your parents and grandparents. If you’re a married couple and each of you is age 60, there is an 89% probability that one of you will live until age 85, according to the Society of Actuaries. As you get older, your health care expenses are likely to increase. In fact, according to the Employer Benefit Research Institute, a 65-year-old couple would need $265,000 in savings to have a 90 percent chance of meeting healthcare costs in retirement, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute. And, that doesn’t even include the potential costs of long-term care.

    Paying for long-term care

    A common misconception is that Medicare or Medicaid will pay for all expenses. The reality is, Medicare does not pay for assisted living facilities, continuing care retirement communities or adult day services. Medicare does provide limited coverage for nursing home care or home health care under certain conditions such as rehabilitation after a hospital stay. For the most part, the costs of long-term care will be your responsibility.

    One alternative to paying these expenses out of your own pocket is long-term care insurance. By paying an annual premium, perhaps from your investment earnings, you can transfer the risk to an insurance company and help protect your assets from long-term care costs. Long-term care insurance can also help you maintain your independence and give you the freedom to choose the type of care you want.

    Here is a checklist of questions to think about if you are considering long-term care insurance:

    • How much protection (daily benefit) does the policy provide?
    • Does the policy contain inflation protection?
    • How many years of institutionalization are included?
    • Is custodial care (assistance with basic day activities either in your home or a nursing home) covered?
    • Is home care covered?
    • Does the policy have restrictive provisions on pre-existing conditions?
    • Is the right to renew the policy guaranteed for life?
    • How financially sound is the company offering the policy?
    • What are the monthly/annual costs versus cash flow and investments?

    If you’re not sure whether long-term care insurance is right for you, talk to us at LTCA. We can help you understand and explore your options for offsetting the risks that long-term care might present to your retirement.

    05/11/2020

    One Senior Place will be re-opening for limited public offerings – see One Senior Place page. In addition, if you need to meet with one of our agents, we can schedule a face-to-face appointment or a virtual one. Please call now if you have any questions: 407-949-6722. We are following all ACHA guidelines to keep you safe.

    Seating limited; registration required 407-949-6733.
    Masks are required and screening protocols are in place for all visitors to One Senior Place. Please visit www.OneSeniorPlace.com/COVIDprotocol for details.