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Are you sure your parents can afford long-term care?

On Behalf of | Aug 14, 2019 | Elder Law

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It may be difficult for you and your parents as they get older. Not only do senior citizens require more care, their health often declines, requiring you to plan for the future. Although it is an emotional time for you and your loved ones, it may be crucial that you take steps to protect your family.

Making sure that your parents have enough money to cover their health and personal care expenses may be stressful. Most adult children do not want to ask their parents about their finances or their declining health.

If you feel uncomfortable with this task, seek guidance. There are legal resources with years of experience that can provide third-party expertise, professionalism and care. If you decide to start this process alone, this post should help you understand the basics.

What is long-term care?

Long-term care ensures that a loved one will get the care and health services he or she needs. Long-term care can include some medical services but is mostly comprised of regular daily living activities like bathing, taking the correct medications and meal preparation.

Depending on the health of your loved one, you or another family member may be able to take care of your loved one for a while. However, if that becomes too much to handle, you may want a home health aide to help when you cannot.

Most Americans don’t realize just how expensive long-term care is. The average annual cost of an in-home care attendant is $46,332. If you were considering putting your loved one in a retirement community then you can expect the cost to double. Not only are nursing homes exceedingly hard to get into, the average annual cost of a single room is $92,378.

If a loved one is unable to afford long-term care, he or she may be eligible for Medicaid.

Qualifying for Medicaid in Nevada

Many people have heard the phrase “medicaid spend down” and expect that they have to spend all of their money before they may become eligible to receive government assistance, but this is not the case. In most states, the government would take half of a couple’s assets in order for one spouse to receive long-term Medicaid coverage.

In Nevada, and some other states, a spouse can petition the court to increase the amount of assets and income they can keep. The spouse may now be able to afford his or her bills, keep the assets and receive long-term care cost coverage.

The sooner you can help your parents prepare for long-term care, the easier it may be for you and your parents. Qualifying for Medicaid can be a confusing and time-consuming process. Being well informed and speaking with someone who has experience planning long-term care and Medicare may make the process easier.