Long Term Care Insurance

One of the most difficult issues to face is the realization that you can no longer provide the type of care a loved one needs. They need an increased level of skilled care many times only provided by a nursing home. I can speak from experience since my family and I recently faced this problem with my father. He became ill and no matter how hard we tried, we could not get him back on his feet again.

Once we have processed this unpleasant realization we then must face the next difficulty—how will we pay for our loved ones care? This can cause a lot of stress if there are not a lot of assets and a fear of running out of money. There are basically two ways to pay for long term care: self-pay or Medicaid. Obviously if there is a large amount of assets we can pay the bill ourselves even though the cost may be $6-7000 per month. If your loved one is fortunate to have long term care insurance some of the cost may be defrayed.

What is Medicaid and how do you qualify?

Medicaid is a state and federally funded program to pay for long term care. The catch is that you have to be virtually out of money to be eligible. Medicaid is a program designed to pay for long term care for those that have spent down their assets. There are assets that are considered countable and non-countable for Medicaid qualification purposes. You may be able to keep your home but generally cash assets must be spent in order to qualify. There may be assets that can be preserved if there is a structured plan put in place. The rules and qualification can be very tricky and it is important to seek the advice of a qualified Elder Care attorney in order to see what strategies may be suitable. The key is not assuming you will not qualify. Check to see what planning can be done for your situation.

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