This makes sense. Especially with the recent economic downturn, family members are the primary providers of support to older adults. An estimated 83 percent of Americans have said that they would feel obligated to provide for a parent in time of need. Additionally, if professional home care cannot be afforded, family members have no choice but to take it on.
Such care can often come unexpectedly, and despite the love with which it is given, can bring a substantial burden to those providing it. Accompanying it are financial hardship, competing demands, physical strain and—perhaps most of all—stress.
The financial hardship that can coincide with such care can also impact the rest of the family; the report states that in 2009, a moderate to high degree of financial hardship resulting from caregiving was reported by more than one in four caregivers of adults. A recent online survey disclosed worries from 6 out of 10 respondents about the impact of caregiving on their personal savings, while more than half reported increased stress about the level of care they could provide because of the economic downturn.
Many of these effects—especially including financial hardship and stress—can be eliminated by a bit of foresight before the fact. As part of retirement planning, long-term care insurance can be provided. This type of insurance is an incredible relief if it is ever needed. Long-term care insurance provides such necessities as a facility monthly benefit to directly pay for care and a home care monthly cash benefit, over a number of years.
While the premiums for long-term care insurance can be expensive, an investment in the right income-producing instrument can help generate income to pay the premiums. “We offer investments designed to provide income, “ says Martin Walcoe, executive vice president at David Lerner Associates. “Using that income to help off-set the cost of long-term care premiums is a smart way to protect your assets.” Always remember that income produced by such investments may not be guaranteed and may fluctuate. Therefore, you should not entirely rely upon that as the only source to fund a long-term care insurance policy. You should possess alternative sources of income sufficient , if necessary, to satisfy premiums required to keep a long-term care insurance policy in force.
Whether called “caregiving” or not, and while given with selfless love, the providing of assistance for a loved one with a long-term illness or disability can bring financial and many other kinds of hardship to the caregiver and the family. Taking steps early on to provide and ensure against this kind of hardship can go a long way to preserving overall family health and wealth.
Note: Investors should consider tax consequences related to investment income prior to committing that income to fund contractual commitment payments (i.e. long-term care insurance premiums) and should consult their tax advisor when considering such commitment.
*There are risks inherent in investing.
Certain investments available at David Lerner Associates are offered by prospectus. Investors should read the prospectuses carefully and consider the investment objectives, risks, charges, expenses and other information before investing. The prospectuses may be obtained from David Lerner Associates, Inc. by calling 1-800-367-3000. Member FINRA & SIPC.