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The Escalating Long-Term Care Crisis

Americans are facing an escalating long-term care (LTC) crisis. Industry driven, massively underpriced policies are playing fiscal catch up with hefty premium rate increases. This price increase is forcing some aging Americans to abandon their policy while others struggle to reduce their amount of LTC coverage to keep their rates affordable or reduce their future lifestyle by dipping into their retirement savings. Abandoning LTC policies turns out to be the last resort for many policyholders as they understand how valuable they are and that a policy lapse would cause them to lose all of their monies paid to the insurer. Throughout the insurance industry, the metrics applied to the long-term care business model underestimated how long policyholders would live and the number of claims they [...]

2020-02-14T09:17:10-05:00February 14th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on The Escalating Long-Term Care Crisis

How to Know When You Need a Trust

How to Know When You Need a Trust This is a common question we hear. Read on for information to help figure out whether you need a trust and, if so, what kind fits your specific situation. For example, maybe you have a disabled child and you want a trust to permit that child to inherit without losing government benefits. Maybe your own or your spouse’s health is heading into difficulties, and you can foresee eventually needing long-term care benefits. Trusts can avoid an expensive, public, and lengthy probate process before your beneficiaries can inherit after you pass. Or, you might be in the classic “trust fund” situation, where you’re concerned that your children won’t be able to manage money wisely. All these are excellent [...]

2020-08-07T10:37:26-05:00February 7th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on How to Know When You Need a Trust

Second Marriages and Medicaid

When people marry for the second time (or more), losing assets to pay for their new spouse’s serious illness is probably the last thing on their minds when they say “I do.” But that could happen. Current costs for long-term care facilities can run between $70,000 – $150,000 annually. Studies show that 70% of Americans will need that kind of care, perhaps for three years or longer. If one spouse in a marriage becomes ill, the assets of both spouses are, by and large, required to be spent on the ill spouse’s care before Medicaid benefits become available. This could be a big problem, especially if the money that the well spouse had saved for her children’s inheritances goes to pay for the ill new [...]

2020-01-30T09:59:20-05:00January 30th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Second Marriages and Medicaid

There’s an Epidemic of Immobility

There is an entire senior industry built around preventative measures and responses to protect older people from falling, and with good reason. According to the National Council on Aging Falls Prevention Facts, “falls remain the leading cause of fatal and nonfatal injuries for older Americans.” Aside from grievous and sometimes fatal injuries, falls are costing money, lots of money. In 2015 Medicare and Medicaid paid 75 percent of the 50 billion dollars in total cost due to fall injuries. With an ever-aging US population, the financial toll is projected to reach 67.7 billion dollars in 2020. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) made a declaration that falls should never happen in a hospital environment and created penalties that became effective in 2008. The [...]

2020-01-23T09:36:26-05:00January 23rd, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on There’s an Epidemic of Immobility

DID THE SECURE ACT RUIN YOUR ESTATE PLAN?

DID THE SECURE ACT RUIN YOUR ESTATE PLAN? The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enrichment Act of 2019 or the SECURE Act, was set into law on January 1, 2020. The Act changed many of the long-standing rules about Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs). The new rules that went into effect include: Increasing the age for withdrawing required minimum distributions (RMDs) from retirement accounts from age 70 1/2 to age 72. Eliminating the previous age restrictions for contributing to traditional IRAs. Eliminating the ability of most non-spouse beneficiaries to 'stretch out' the RMDs on inherited retirement plans The elimination of the "stretch out" is what we find most concerning. Traditionally, at the age of 70 1/2 people were required to begin withdrawing funds from their [...]

2020-08-07T10:35:12-05:00January 20th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on DID THE SECURE ACT RUIN YOUR ESTATE PLAN?

You’d Be Surprised What Technology Can Be Hacked

The internet of things (IoT) is responsible for many conveniences via embedded electronic devices, and many seniors are making use of these technologies. It is becoming increasingly common for everyday items like refrigerators, thermostats, and doorbells to be internet-connected making our homes and personal information subject to hacking. A hacker will subvert computer security for malicious purposes. Seniors who employ IoT devices for safety and convenience may be less wary of all the ways their devices can be compromised. If you are a senior or have a loved one who is, it is imperative to have them, or a trusted friend, update software from device manufacturers and routinely monitor their devices. A Smart TV provides many hacking opportunities. The problem can be an annoying prankster [...]

2020-01-16T18:30:46-05:00January 16th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on You’d Be Surprised What Technology Can Be Hacked

Lifestyle Diseases on the Rise

Lifestyle Diseases on the Rise Health experts have been advising people for years about unhealthy habits being the cause of "lifestyle" diseases that are increasing across the US. These lifestyle diseases become more common with age and include heart disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, and Alzheimer's disease. Around the globe, these diseases account for 70 percent of all deaths. New Scientist magazine is reporting evidence suggesting bacteria are to blame for the diseases and that this finding will herald the coming of a revolution in medicine. However, don’t stop healthy habits just yet; findings in disease after disease indicate that bacteria are covertly involved which complicates the problem. Bacteria will invade bodily organs and then co-opt the immune system in a sort of parasitic [...]

2020-08-07T10:41:26-05:00January 10th, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Lifestyle Diseases on the Rise

Google Has a New Use for Your Health Records

Google Has a New Use for Your Health Records When Google Inc became a publicly-traded company in 2004, its founders wrote a letter that said, in part, Google and its employees are "committed to significantly improving the lives of as many people as possible." Google is famously known for its search engine and is part of many inter-related technology companies under the parent company Alphabet. High tech companies are becoming more plural in their pursuits and more pervasive in our daily lives than ever before. The mission of Google is "to organize the world's information and make it universally accessible and useful." This mission now includes your health data. Without explicit permission, Google's Project Nightingale, under the corporation’s Cloud Division, is gathering the health records [...]

2020-08-07T10:36:53-05:00January 3rd, 2020|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Google Has a New Use for Your Health Records

Seniors More Indebted Than Ever

America experienced its worst financial crisis since the great depression between 2007 and 2010. Known as the subprime mortgage crisis, it happened because home prices fell in 2006, triggering loan defaults. Then the risk spread into pension funds, mutual funds, and corporations who owned the derivatives. It also spread into the global credit market resulting in higher interest rates and reduced availability of credit. Quantitative easing was necessary for several years to lower interest rates and spur economic growth. The cautionary tale to all Americans was learning to live beneath their means and do not carry excessive amounts of debt. Many Americans did not take heed and as a result, they are in substantial debt. One of the saddest cases of all of the debtors [...]

2020-04-15T09:13:47-05:00December 20th, 2019|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Seniors More Indebted Than Ever

Possible Dementia Indicated by Poor Financial Decisions

Diminishing brain function due to the onset of dementia can lead to the destruction of your financial well-being. If you are age 50 or older, easy access to your financial assets like stocks and bonds, checking and savings accounts, money market accounts, and other assets can lead to loss of these funds if an unauthorized person gains access to them, or if they are mismanaged. Family members are often unaware their loved one needs help before the unintentionally mismanaged assets, now gone, bring about devastating consequences for both the person living with dementia as well as their family. The Alzheimer’s Association reports that from diagnosis to death, Alzheimer’s disease (AD) care will cost an average of $424,000 per individual, and 70 percent of that cost [...]

2020-04-15T09:11:12-05:00December 17th, 2019|Uncategorized|Comments Off on Possible Dementia Indicated by Poor Financial Decisions
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