Whether you are 25 or 75, the reality is that no one likes to face the end of their mortal lives or think about it on a day-to-day basis. The harsh truth is that it is necessary to prepare no matter how old you are. If you want to have plans in place to distribute your assets, settle your estate and care for yourself and family members once you are unable, then you must have some type of long-term plan in place. As scary as it is to face your own mortality, the right thing to do it to be prepared for anything that comes your way.
There are many misunderstandings about long-term planning that the average American faces, and some can overwhelm and confuse you into avoiding the whole process. The following are myths that should not affect your decision to create a long-term care plan.
1. You can provide for your spouse or partner forever
You always want to look our for for your spouse or partner, but the reality is that there will be times when it is not feasible to care for your loved one at home. It can become more expensive and even dangerous to arrange care for your family when you are unable to do so. In your long-term care planning, do you have provisions set up to care for loved ones if you pass away or are unable to care for them in your home?
2. Medicare and Medicaid are the same
If you or your spouse paid into the system throughout your lifetime, you are eligible for Medicare, which is not asset or income based. Medicaid eligibility is determined based on the applicant’s income and assets. Medicaid rules differ from state to state, while Medicare eligibility remains the same throughout the country.
3. Medicaid will cover assisted living and home health care when you need it
While some programs do offer coverage for assisted living or home health care, the programs are often underfunded and difficult to get approved. In no situation will Medicaid pay for around-the-clock home care. It is most often necessary that you pay for your care privately rather than relying on the government.
4. You can forego a long-term care plan
You may feel invincible, healthy and like nothing can take you down. Unfortunately, life happens and you must always be prepared for any contingency. If you want the peace of mind of knowing that your long-term care is established legally and in writing, we encourage you to speak to an attorney today.