Why Long-Term Care Should Be a Part of Your Financial Plan

Posted on

Dec 07, 2017

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For the last three years, Deborah Mills has been caring for her mother, who has Alzheimers and needs constant supervision. While Mills is happy to be in a situation in which shes able to help, the experience has been stressfulespecially given the high financial cost of caregiving.
Kamilah Williams-Kemp, vice president of long-term care at Northwestern Mutual, has seen firsthand the struggles of family caregivers, having watched her mother-in-law care for a family member. Northwestern Mutual s C.A.R.E. (Costs, Accountabilities, Realities, Expectations) study found that expenses relating to caregiving made up around one-third of a caregivers monthly budget.
What we saw in the study was that many of the people needing care had used up their assets to cover the costs of care, said Williams-Kemp.
The Costs of Caregiving
When it comes to the impacts of caring for a loved one, the financial burdens of caregiving were cited in the study as the second biggest impact after reduced personal time. Thats not surprising given the rising costs of caregiving.
Many people dont expect these expenses, according to Williams-Kemp. In the study, only one in four potential future caregivers said that financial support was a key attribute of caregiving, but nearly two-thirds of caregivers actually end up providing financial support.

How to Plan Ahead:
Four in ten Americans are current or past caregivers, and one in five non-caregivers expect to provide care in the future. Still, a financial plan that includes long-term care can be a sensitive topic.
Ensuring that you have a plan can give you more options to make choices about care and protect your family.
How to Cope Financially if You Didnt Plan
While the financial demands of caregiving can feel overwhelming, there are strategies that can help caregivers manage. The first thing youll want to do is work with the financial advisor and attorney of the person who needs care, Williams-Kemp said. Look at his or her assets to figure out how to best leverage them in caregiving situations.

Planning Ahead Provides Certainty in Uncertain Situations
Those who do have a plan in place feel comforted, according to Williams-Kemp. Ive been told by people whom weve helped plan ahead that theres an incredible peace of mind to not having to worry about the financial aspects of their care or feel like theyre a burden to the family members who otherwise would have stepped in to help, she said. The full article can be found at www.northwesternmutual.com/life-and-money/long-term-care-should-be-a-part-of-your-financial-plan

Article prepared by Northwestern Mutual with the cooperation of Bruce Mozinski. Bruce Mozinski is a Wealth Management Advisor with Northwestern Mutual, the marketing name for The Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Company (NM), Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and its subsidiaries. Bruce Mozinski is based in Southborough, MA. To contact Bruce Mozinski, please call (508) 251-7223, e-mail at bruce.mozinski@nm.com, or visit brucemozinski.com.

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