Massachusetts Elder Law and Long Term Care Planning
Longer life expectancies and the extremely high cost of long-term care has made long term care planning a top of mind concern for most families in the United States. A majority of retirees are likely to need some period of long-term care. Without adequate planning, families could suffer financial devastation.
Nursing home costs in Eastern Massachusetts average about $120,000 per year – and the cost has been increasing rapidly.
Long-Term Care Planning Options
While some seniors are able to afford private pay care, the cost of long-term care will wipe out savings of all but the wealthiest families in a matter of years. Those who have planned ahead by purchasing long-term care insurance have a degree of certainty and peace of mind, knowing that they have a lesser need to rely on other sources in the future. Unfortunately, many can’t afford the high cost of long term care insurance or worse, because of age of medical condition cannot qualify for long term care insurance altogether.
If you do have long-term care insurance, make sure you check what your policy covers. Some policies have high deductibles or provide for only a short period of care in facility. While having long term care insurance can be extremely helpful, not everyone can afford policies that cover an extended period of long term care illness. That means many families will still have to rely on Medicaid to pay for their care.
It’s important to know your options ahead of time so that you are able to make the best informed decisions when a family member develops a long term illness like Alzheimers or Parkinson’s.
We have helped many families access care providers, housing resources and to avoid the catastrophic financial devastation caused so often by an illness that requires long term care. Elder law is very complex and rapidly changing so be sure you meet with a qualified and knowledgeable elder law attorney. The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys is the premier organization for legal education and training for elder law attorneys throughout the U.S. and one way we keep up to date and able to provide top-notch services in this complex and changing area of the law.
Obtaining Assistance – Medicaid Eligibility
Many people are surprised to find out that Medicare does not pay for long term care. The Medicaid program provides payment for long term care, but only to those who qualify financially. In fact, Medicaid is the single largest payer of nursing home bills in America and often serves as the only option for many families. The Deficit Reduction Act of 2005 which went into effect in 2006 has eliminated many last minute planning options. As a result, learning more about your options early on and ahead of the need, is now more important now then ever.