Long term care (LTC) is a term that has many facets to its definition. It is comprised of a variety of services that meet medical and non-medical requirements for people who cannot care for themselves for long periods of time. It is a highly individualized care system which can be formally or informally provided. Formal facilities that provide long term care go by various names such as residential continuing care facility, nursing home, and personal care facility. Informal long term care is often provided, in its earlier stages, by a family member who is willing to provide their parent personal care, meals, laundry services, housekeeping, and transportation services to and from appointments.
The business of selling long term care insurance has changed dramatically over the last 20-30 years, which in turn has affected how senior citizens protect their assets.
What was once a busy marketplace of more than 100 insurers vying for long-term care dollars, has shrunk to a group of fewer than 20.
This was because many insurers drastically underestimated how long their policy holders would live, and how many claims they would file.
As the Wall Street Journal reported earlier this year, the insurance industry is in the midst of something of a panic trying to cover its losses, which means that many senior citizens who have long-term care policies are seeing significant rate hikes, some as high as 90 percent.
This leaves them with an almost impossible choice: pay this steep increase or walk away from coverage you’ve been paying into for years, if not decades.
May is National Elder Law Month, as designated by the National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys. It is a way to acknowledge the profession that supports seniors and their families with all of their planning needs. And while that sounds great, many people still ask, “What do elder law attorneys do?” Part 1 of this series, “Why May is Special for Elder Law Attorneys” will explore several ways elder law attorneys help seniors and their loved ones.
It’s one of the most difficult decisions a family can face: Moving an older parent into a long-term care facility. Even if the parent recognizes they can no longer live on their own, there are other major questions to be answered:
How do we know a nursing home is safe? How can we make sure they’ll get the best care? As an elder care attorney in Bucks County, Richard Newman knows how difficult it can to answer these questions. That’s why we’re sharing this list from the AARP.