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5 Common Long-Term Care Planning Mistakes to Avoid

The need for long-term care can arise suddenly, or it may be a gradual process. Either way, advance planning can help you prepare for the need to have long-term care for virtually any reason when you need it. Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of not preparing at all or preparing in a way that is not really complete. Your long-term care planning will be much more effective if you consider these common mistakes and take steps to avoid them.

1. Failing to plan properly or at all

The most common mistake that people make when it comes to long-term planning is failing to plan at all. For many people, they know that they need to make plans, but they fail to take any action on them. Although planning your long-term care as you age or if a sudden health emergency strikes is not fun to think about, it is a necessary topic to address with your attorney and your loved ones.

2. Assuming that you do not qualify for Medicare or Medicaid

Medicare and Medicaid are federal problems that can be very helpful when you are determining how to pay for long-term care. Often, when people do not use these programs when they are younger, they assume that the programs are not available as they get older. However, with proper planning, these programs can save you and your family thousands of dollars over time. You can take steps now to plan to take advantage of these programs.

3. Relying on Medicare or Medicaid alone to pay for care

Some people take their reliance on Medicare or Medicaid too far. While these programs are helpful supplements, they should not be your only source of financial support and care while you are in long-term care. It is always possible that you do not get as much as you were expecting or you do not qualify for some reason, and you need to take steps to plan for that possibility as well. Regardless, these programs cannot address every expense that may crop up during your long-term care, either.

4. Assuming your average estate plan will address long-term care

Creating an estate plan is important, but it often will not address all of your needs when it comes to long-term care. A Will, for example, does not deal with long-term care, and it is not effective until after you pass, even if you put terms in it that touch on long-term care. You need to create a separate document that sets out your wishes regarding medical care, and that document can be incorporated as part of your overall estate planning package.

5. Believing that it is too late or too early to plan

You can plan for your long-term care needs at virtually any time, but the sooner, the better. It is rarely too early or too late to plan, and you should take steps today to address your long-term care needs. Your family and other loved ones will thank you.

Learn more about what you can do to address your long-term care planning needs by contacting Elder Care Law Firm. Call our office today to learn more.