Each of us is aging. No matter how we may want to deny it, we grow older each day. The AARP shares that by 2020 there will be over 40 billion people who are over age 65. Although there are many benefits to growing older, it also means we need to consider a potentially uncertain long-term care future.

Have you thought about your possible Wisconsin long-term care needs? How will you pay for extra care if you need it? Is your house handicap accessible? Could you hire a companion to live with you? How close and available are your children? The reality is that with aging, comes the need for planning. When we talk to our clients, we see many of the same questions on the forefront of every conversation. We want to share a few of the answers we give them and help you understand why you need to take the time to plan your long-term care now.

1.  Long-term care is expensive and costs continue to rise.

Long term care can be expensive, so it’s important to plan ahead for costs. Your Wisconsin Elder Law attorney can help you in finding the right strategy for you. A recent study shares “nationwide, the median cost of home care services for a homemaker or an aide hired through a home healthcare agency is $19.75/hour. Home health aide services have risen approximately 1.4 percent annually over the past 5 years. The cost to receive long term care in a facility setting is increasing at a much faster rate.” Where possible you want to create a financial strategy for long-term care that is right for you. Although we frequently help clients who are in the midst of a long-term care crisis needing placement in a skilled nursing facility, planning early can alleviate much of the tension and stress of your family.

2.  Medicare will not cover the cost of long term care after helping for the first 100 days.

If you are putting off long term care planning because you think that Medicare will cover your needs? Think again! Medicare does not help pay for daily custodial care after the first 100 days in a skilled facility, and often not at all if you are admitted without a three day hospital stay. You need to plan now for how you will pay for skilled care or even assisted living facility care should you need it.

3.  You need to make choices while you are competent.

Planning in advance can help ensure that all your wishes are clearly made and your decisions are honored in regard to long term care concerns. Working with your elder law attorney in advance means that you can get your ducks in a row and communicate your wishes to your advocate and your family. If you decide to wait, you risk the chance of having these choices available to pay for care, not having your wishes honored and not having capacity to voice your opinions when the time comes!

Long term care decisions are important. We want to work with you to plan sooner than later. At the Hougum Law Firm, we know and understand the challenges you face and we want to help you plan ahead to protect yourself and those you love most. Call us at (715) 843-5001 or contact us through our website to schedule an appointment with Attorney Alan Hougum.