Planning a person’s future—especially as they are aging and struggling to take care of daily tasks—is both daunting and stressful for the individual and their loved ones. Long-term care is a type of service that individuals often need if they cannot care for themselves, either due to illness, disability, or diseases like Alzheimer’s. Long-term care often includes care in a Houston nursing home, supervision at an adult day care facility, and health services provided at home. However, these services are often extremely costly, so loved ones worry about paying for such care. Below we discuss a few options for paying for long-term care, along with explaining long-term care insurance.
How Can I Pay for Long-Term Care?
The cost of the services is based on numerous factors, including the type of care needed, how long the care is required, where the care is given, and what type of medical professional provides it. Because of this, there are a variety of ways to pay for long-term care. These options are personal savings, Medicaid; Medicare; benefits from a life insurance policy; or long-term care insurance.
Medicaid is a Texas state and federal program that pays health care and long-term care expenses for low-income individuals. On the other hand, Medicare is a federal program that pays for healthcare for individuals over 65 years old or individuals under 65 with disabilities. Medicare will also cover up to 100 days of nursing home care, but because most individuals need a longer stay than this, Medicare is not a long-term solution.
Other individuals use life insurance payments to pay for long-term care, either utilizing a rider or an accelerated death benefit. A rider is added coverage to a life insurance policy, which then can be utilized to pay for care. On the other hand, some individuals use an accelerated death benefit, which allows a person to get their death benefit while they are alive. This can only be used if the person is diagnosed with a serious illness. The insurance company will then subtract the amount given for long-term care from the death benefit owed to their beneficiaries when they pass away.
What Is Long-Term Care Insurance?
Long-term care insurance can be used to pay for long-term care services like nursing home care, home health services, and adult daycare. However, long-term care policies do not cover some conditions, like preexisting conditions, mental disorders, and care by family members. Because long-term care insurance can be expensive, it often is used by individuals with significant assets they wish to protect. However, there are multiple factors individuals should evaluate before purchasing long-term care insurance, including the person’s health, assets, and income.
Because figuring out the best way to pay for long-term care is often a personalized—and difficult—decision, individuals going through this critical time should consult with an experienced elder law attorney.
Contact a Houston Elder Law Attorney
For people looking at long-term care solutions—either for themselves or a loved one—contact the experienced Houston elder law attorneys at McCulloch & Miller, PLLC. We know that planning for long-term care is very time-consuming and stressful, and we are here to help. To schedule a consultation and to speak with one of our knowledgeable attorneys, call us today at 713-333-8900.