Though many Ohio residents may not want to think about it, the possibility that they could need long-term care in the future exists. Whether due to an injury-causing accident, cognitive decline in their elderly years or simply the difficulties that come with aging, needing someone to help with daily care affects numerous people across the country.
If you are nearing retirement age, you may be thinking more about your estate plan. While your first thoughts may revolve around getting your asset distribution instructions in line, it is also essential that you consider leaving long-term care instructions as part of your plan. Though you may feel in the prime of health now, circumstances can change quickly, and you undoubtedly do not want to leave your care up to chance or put your family in difficult decision-making scenarios without your insight.
How to start planning
A foundational starting point for long-term care planning is to consider what type of care you believe you would want in a given situation. Would you prefer that a loved one provide your care? If a loved one cannot, would you want in-home assistance from a professional? Would you rather move out of your home and into an assisted living or nursing facility for round-the-clock assistance? These details matter and could prevent your loved ones from having to guess at what you would want.
Once you have at least a rough idea of what you want any future care to involve, start a conversation with your family. Certainly, leaving your instructions in legal documents is wise and often necessary, but letting your family in on your wishes early on could ensure that everyone understands your wishes and why you want them handled in a particular way. You could answer questions and reassure your loved ones that you are taking steps to handle financial planning needed for your care.
Considering your finances
The financial planning aspect of long-term care planning is often one of the most important to consider. Unfortunately, in-home assistance and nursing facility care can cost substantial amounts of money, and if funds are not set aside for that specific use, your family may face a financial burden or may have to compromise on your wishes for care.
Fortunately, various planning options exist, including asset protection trusts, that could allow you to consider ways to set aside funds for future care and other specific uses. Gaining information on options that may suit your particular circumstances could prove beneficial as you begin your planning journey.