Family members sometimes struggle to afford care services for elderly loved ones. Both long term senior care and short-term senior care usually result in significant bills. This brief article addresses some of the most popular ways to pay for these expenses:
- Long-Term Care Insurance
Although premiums rise sharply with age, a long-term care insurance policy may help fund senior care for people who begin planning for this service at a younger age.
- Family Trusts
Some families benefit from trust funds they (or others) have established to help pay for senior care.
People who plan ahead for retirement sometimes rely upon annuities to help pay for senior care costs.
- Government Programs
Depending upon an ailing senior’s unique circumstances, a variety of government programs may offer some short or long term funding assistance. Medicare won’t cover long term care in a home setting, but may furnish financial support for six months of hospice care or short term care for people over age 65 suffering from some designated medical illnesses. Veterans can obtain assistance for home care through the VA in some situations. Medicaid offers assistance to low income seniors in some states. Another government program, PACE (Program of All-Inclusive Care For The Elderly) reportedly helps fund care for patients with Alzheimer’s Disease (and some other conditions) in some states. Your local State Health Insurance Assistance Program can supply useful detailed information.
- Out-of-pocket Expenditures by Family Members
Caring for an aging senior may necessitate significant out-of-pocket expenses. From incurring debt to moonlighting to household budget cost cutting, younger family members often pay all (or a portion) of the bill themselves.
- Reverse Mortgages
Seniors with free and clear real estate might consider utilizing a reverse mortgage to help pay for senior care expenses. At the end of the payment period, the real estate frequently passes to the mortgage company unless the mortgagee (or the mortgagee’s heirs) can pay off the reverse mortgage in full.
- Caregiver Tax Credit Assistance
Children caring for a senior dependent may qualify for tax assistance in the form of a tax credit to offset a portion of the cost.
Most experts recommend advanced planning for senior care expenses. Begin early. Insurance policies, trusts, and/or annuities assist this process.