Elder Law Attorney Michael Gilfix Comments on Findings of Long Term Care Poll

Law Firm Newswire



San Francisco, CA (Law Firm Newswire) November 15, 2016 – Many Americans approaching old age are unsure of their ability to pay for long term care, according to an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research report.

Misconceptions persist among the aging adult population about the ways in which long term care will be financed. Around one-third of individuals aged 40 and older have not planned for their future needs, whether it is saving for a nursing home or setting aside funds for in-home care.

“Planning for long term care for yourself or a loved one is essential to ensuring the latter years of life are comfortable,” said nationally known elder law attorney Michael Gilfix. “Families should discuss all the available options and their associated costs so that they can prepare for the future. Doing so will allow them to approach old age with a greater sense of confidence about getting and paying for quality long term care.”

The survey revealed fewer than half of Americans have discussed long term care with their families. The main reason for the lack of conversation about the topic is that four in 10 adults assume they will not require long term care. The mindset contradicts the U.S. Administration on Aging’s estimate that around 70 percent of aging adults will require assistance with everyday tasks as they turn 65.

In addition, the report found the same number of individuals misguidedly intend to seek assistance from Medicare as they age. However, the government program does not finance long term care. Medicaid is actually the main provider of long term care coverage. The program spent almost $89 billion for seniors in 2013.

Americans also expressed support for policies proposed to assist caregivers with shouldering the expenses of providing long term care to others. These include tax breaks and state programs for paid family leave.

“An experienced elder law attorney can assist individuals with planning for the possibility of caregiving or receiving long term care while protecting their assets to ensure their savings are not completely exhausted,” said Gilfix.