Scott Counsel PC October 2019

www.scottcounsel.com 856-281-3131

OCTOBER 2019

Don’t Be Spooked By the Costs of End-of-Life Care

Around Halloween, it’s okay to be scared. It’s part of the festivities. You’re supposed to feel frightened as you jump and scream in a haunted corn maze or while watching a scary movie. But do you know what you shouldn’t be scared of this time of year or at any point in your life? The costs of caregiving. About 52% of 65-year-olds will develop a disability and need long-term care. Everybody’s end-of-life plan is going to look a little different, but we at Scott Counsel want you to know that you don’t have to be spooked by the costs of caregiving. Anyone versed in elder law knows why it’s important to have a plan for end-of-life care. The costs of caregiving can lead to shrinkage in your estate, which means there will be less left for your beneficiaries after you’re gone. We want to prevent that and help you get the care you need to be comfortable at the end of your life. So how can you attain the peace of mind that comes from knowing that you and your loved ones will be taken care of at the end of your life? If you qualify for Medicare, Medicaid, or both, that’s a good place to start. Just to make the difference between these two massive government health care programs clear, Medicare is a program meant to cover health expenses specifically for individuals over the age of 65, and Medicaid is a program that covers health insurance for people who have a low income. Both of these programs can seem overly complicated, and each comes with its own obstacles when exploring long-term care options. While Medicare covers seniors’ medical expenses, it doesn’t cover custodial care for seniors, defined as any nonmedical help they might need for day-to-day activities. Medicaid can make you eligible for nursing home care,

but suffice it to say the cost to qualify is steep. If you believe you’re eligible for Medicare or Medicaid and you don’t know if you have the means to explore other options, call our office and set up a free consultation. Of course, chances are many of you are not eligible for Medicare or Medicaid. The good news is that there are still plenty of options you can look into to make sure your long-term care costs don’t deplenish your assets. The less good news is that having a multitude of options can make it difficult to discern the right path forward. If you’ve found yourself at this fork in the road, a good path to start investigating is a long-term care insurance plan. Using this type of plan is a good way to protect your savings and give you more choices for end-of-life care. Maybe instead of spending your final days in a nursing home, you want to spend them in your own home, where you’ve lived for the past 30, 40, or 50

years. Long-term care plans can help with that. You can qualify to start using long-term care insurance when you are incapable of at least two of the following six daily living activities without assistance: bathing, caring for incontinence, dressing, eating, getting on or off the toilet, or getting out of bed or a chair. However, to qualify, you do have to apply for the insurance before you actually need it. For all the anxiety these choices might cause you, it may feel like the many paths forward are in the middle of some spooky forest straight out of a horror movie. But with Scott Counsel on your side, it doesn’t have to feel that way. Give us a call or stop by our office for a visit.

-Justin Scott

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