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The benefits of the long-term care planning process

Making decisions regarding your health care needs is not reserved for times when you are elderly, ill or undergoing surgery. Health care planning is an important step to take and can be carefully addressed in the estate planning process. Even more so, these decisions can be decided earlier in life because an individual does not need to be elderly to initiate the long-term planning process.

No matter your age, the long-term care planning process pays off. It allows an individual to take the time to fully address all their needs and wishes that will fall into place if he or she becomes ill or incapacitated. While Medicare can help an individual with the costs associated with nursing home care, this is often not enough to cover the costs associated with a nursing home, home health care or hospice.

No one wants to see his or her hard-earned property go to waste while he or she cannot afford the medical expenses associated with a nursing home. Therefore, a carefully drafted estate-planning document could help designate how these expenses will be paid for. Additionally, this will help protect certain assets, such as real property, from being used to pay for these costs.

In addition to drafting a document that will designate what will be used to pay for these expenses, it is possible to obtain long-term care insurance. This could help offset the high costs associated with the medical care elderly individuals require.

No matter what your wishes are when you become elderly and unable to care for yourself, it is important to get these wishes in writing. Including these specific details in a legal document does not only ensure that these plan are followed but it could also help an individual protect assets and property from being used to cover these costs.

Source: Agweb.com, "Long-Term Planning Pays Off," Anna-Lisa Laca, Feb. 22, 2017

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