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Estate planning includes long-term care preparations

Long-term care planning in Minnesota deals with the post-retirement years and the potential need for home care services or residential care in a nursing home or similar institution. The estate planning process should take these concerns into consideration in making a complete estate plan. Of course, this is not the kind of concern that pertains to people who die peacefully in their sleep while still fully functional.

Despite those rare and unpredictable occurrences, however, most people face the possibility of needing to reside in a nursing home during their last years. That is particularly true if there are no family members to care for them or if there are insufficient funds to cover private home-care expenses for a number of years. Another solution that requires substantial financial funding is long-term care insurance.

Such insurance has become very expensive and may be out of financial reach for many persons. For those who can afford it, this may be the best option to choose. It will give a person more choices and a better chance to set up a plan that avoids a nursing home. If one waits too long, however, the insurance option may become impossible. It is best to check out these plans through a financial planning or insurance expert as early as possible.

It is also important to ask the agent for information on policies that may have a dual purpose, such as providing an annuity or life insurance feature if the insured does not have a need for the long-term care coverage. If those options are not going to be available, then elderly individuals will have to rely on Medicaid funding if and when the necessity arises. To set up the most cost-effective plan for potential Medicaid funding in Minnesota, it is suggested that the person and family members discuss the options with an estate planning attorney. The attorney will gather all of the pertinent information and suggest planning strategy for the long-term future.

Source: lufkindailynews.com, "MOOS: Few people plan for the cost of long-term care", Bob Moos, Sept. 12, 2016

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