Long term care planning is a process of financial planning by an individual, a couple or an entire family, for continuity of care of a person at home, in assisted living and in a skilled nursing facility, as the person’s health declines physically and/or mentally. The planning may include long term care insurance for those who can qualify. It may involve placing resources in investments which will generate sufficient cash flow to meet expected needs. It may involve purchasing annuities, specialty insurance policies or other financial products to cover the projected care costs.
For a married couple the planning involves arranging the finances so that the healthy spouse is not impoverished by the needs of the ill spouse. This may involve qualifying the ill spouse for Medi-Cal (California’s version of the federal Medicaid program). The Medi-Cal program might also be appropriate if the disabled person has an adult disabled child or other dependent for whom support is a consideration. There are many Medi-Cal planning options for married couples. There are fewer for single individuals, but there are still planning opportunities nonetheless.
Most long term care planning involves more than one single transaction. It may involve a series of steps to arrange financial affairs, possibly obtain public assistance and then avoid a later claim for reimbursement for any public assistance that was obtained. Waiting until a person is already in dire financial straits before addressing the financial issues is not planning. It is simply reacting. The sooner the planning begins the more options that may be available and the more effectively the planning will likely be.
For more information and personal consultation contact a member of our Wellness Village under Legal Professionals