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Elder law 
Long-term care planning: a daunting task

Jan 2, 2013, 11:44 a.m.

This year, about 9 million men and women over the age of 65 will need long-term care, and by 2020, 12 million older Americans will need long-term care, according to Medicare.gov.

Every day, more and more Baby Boomers and other Americans are concerned with planning for their financial future and health care options should they become seriously ill. An important and often complicated component is planning how to pay for the high cost of long-term care.

Should you purchase long-term care insurance, and if so, what are your options? How do you decide if you’ll need in-home care, a day program, an assisted living arrangement, or a nursing home? The average cost of a nursing home ranges from $85,000 to $120,000 a year, according to the American Academy of Actuaries. Will Medicare cover all or any of the costs? How does Medicaid fit in the picture?

The National Academy of Elder Law Attorneys (NAELA) supports public education about the possible need for long-term care and the availability of financing options for older Americans and people with special needs. NAELA also advocates for long-term care services that are as affordable as possible without sacrificing quality of care.
 “Early long-term care planning pays off, but such planning can be overwhelming when you sit down and begin reading up on all the rules, processes, and paperwork involved. NAELA members can identify and ensure that you understand all the advantages and disadvantages of the various options for you and your loved ones to receive the appropriate care,” said NAELA President Gregory S. French, CELA, CAP.

To receive a free NAELA brochure, “Questions and Answers When Looking for an Elder and Special Needs Law Attorney,” contact Communications Specialist Abby Matienzo by email or phone at 703-942-5711, ext. 230.

Find an Elder and Special Needs Law attorney in your area using NAELA’s online member directory.

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