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Not planning for long-term health care, when doing farm business transition and estate planning, can financially cripple the farm business. First, farmers like many people don’t think about the financial costs and burdens of aging. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services says when you reach the age of 65 you will have a 7 in 10 chance of needing some type of long-term care service before you pass. Just like most people, farmers would prefer to stay in their own homes as opposed to going to a facility. In some cases that facility might not be close to family. Plus, many farmers want to keep the farm in the family and the majority of their assets are tied to that real estate.

In short, there are three reasons why many farm families overlook planning for long-term health care when doing business transition and estate planning:

  • They do not realize the probability of needing long-term care.
  • They do not realize long-term care costs increase year after year
  • They have misconceptions about what they can do to shelter their assets from long-term care costs.

 

Plus, like any other family, you can’t depend on a spouse or adult children to be caregivers nor do most people wish to place that burden on them to start with.

Read more from the University of Minnesota Extension Office: http://www.crowrivermedia.com/hutchinsonleader/news/lifestyle/why-farmers-need-to-plan-for-long-term-care/article_a05e7686-5c05-59e8-961a-273be5d14834.html

Farmer, rancher, small business owner or just a normal person attempting to safeguard their future retirement income and assets, affordable Long-Term Care Insurance will protect those assets and ease the burden placed on family. Single premium products are popular for many farmers as their income can vary from year to year. These products also usually provide a death benefit so in event you never need care your estate would get the money back. For a farm family this is the best of both worlds. No matter if you go with a tradition policy or a single premium policy, these plans are very affordable. Tax incentives are available as well for many. Keep in mind the best time to plan in well before you retire. Premiums are based on AGE and HEALTH, along with the size of the benefit you select at the time of application. Be sure to work with a long-term care specialist. There are very few of those nationwide. Be sure they have extensive experience in long-term care, work with all the major companies and have at least 500 clients with LTC policies in place. This is important peace-of-mind knowing you have preserved your legacy and avoiding becoming a burden on your loved ones.

Posted: March 12th 2017

For the second year in a row, Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island in Florida remains the top U.S. metro community for overall well-being, according to a newly released ranking by Gallup and Healthways. or the second year in a row, Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island in Florida remains the top U.S. metro community for overall well-being. Communities are uniquely positioned to promote well-being improvement by transforming policies and environment so that people move naturally, eat wisely, connect, and have the right outlook—all of which can lead to living longer, better.

Read this report from CBS News for more: http://www.cbsnews.com/news/healthiest-communities-in-america-well-being-index/

Adding to well-being is a plan for Long-Term Health Care. No matter where you live or where you may retire to, your risk of needing help with activities of daily living or even supervision due to memory problems is a real risk of aging. The cost of long-term care is high and not paid for (other than a small amount of skilled care) by health insurance or once you are 65, Medicare and your Medicare Supplement. This means a successful future retirement should include a plan to address the financial costs and burdens of aging. Affordable Long-Term Care Insurance will safeguard your 401(k), IRA, 403(b) and other savings while easing the burden on your family.

Most states have partnership plans available which provide additional dollar-for-dollar asset protection. Single premium plans with death benefits are now available as well. Seek help from a specialist and see how easy and affordable a plan can be. You will enjoy better well-being with the peace-of-mind a long-term care insurance policy will provide. Plan before you retire when premiums are low and your health is better.


Posted: March 11th 2017

Many people have heard their parents say this at some point, "Whatever you do, promise me you won't put me in a nursing home." Have you heard these words? The fact is few if anyone ever wants to be in a nursing home. Nor do family members desire to force the issue with an older parent. Many times, without an advance plan, this becomes the end result. In some cases, even with advance planning, a nursing home is the best option. If you are dealing with this now you may feel guilt even though it may be the best thing for your family member. How do you deal with this guilt and depression? What have you done differently than your parent so your family will not have to go through the same thing?

Read this first:  https://www.verywell.com/guilt-and-grief-in-nursing-homes-97982

So what have you done differently than your parents? Affordable Long Term Care Insurance will provide the resources for quality caregivers in your home, adult day care, assisted living as well as nursing homes. It will also safeguard assets since the cost of care is very high. Many plans offer case management which will help your family make recommendations when the time comes you require care. This eases both the financial and emotional burdens that long-term care creates. The time to plan is well before you need care ... plan prior to retirement. Don't place your family into the guilt of crisis management because you failed to plan.

Long-Term Care Insurance is very affordable but there are a few tips to consider as you start your learning process:

 

  1. Premiums are based on AGE and HEALTH as well as the benefits the policy offers. Start looking into plans ideally before you retire – age 40 to 65. Plans are still available for those over 65 but some options might not be available due to health or costs.
  2. Work with a specialist. A vast majority of financial advisors or general insurance agents don’t understand how these plans really work, they don’t understand underwriting and how it differs from each company, they tend to not understand the benefits of the partnership program which is available in most states and they recommend benefits way larger than you may actually need. A specialist will work with all the top companies, have at least 500 clients with LTC policies so they know of these plans work at the time of claim, and can give you affordable options that are based on your situation.
  3. Most states do offer partnership plans which offer additional dollar-for-dollar asset protection. Be sure to learn how these plans work.
  4. “Hybrid” plans are available which are life insurance or annuities with riders which pay for long-term care. Generally, these are single premium products which offer some or all your money back if you are lucky enough to never require care. Be careful here and work with an LTC specialist since many of these products offer very limited or restricted LTC benefit.
  5. Even a small policy will help. Keep in mind most claims start and end at home. Most people will prefer to be in their own home. A small policy can fund a large amount of home health care allowing you to avoid or at least delay the need for a nursing home.

Add peace-of-mind to your retirement plan and make sure your family will not be burdens from the high risk of needing care. People need care either due to illness, accidents or the impact of aging. We are all living longer and advances in medical science make that risk even larger. Act now and plan ahead.

Posted: March 10th 2017

Just think for a moment. We live in an aging society. Advances in medical science allow us to survive accidents and illnesses that just 20 years ago would not have been possible. More people take better care of their health. We get check-ups (remember many in the “Greatest Generation” didn’t like to go to doctors), we try to be more active and we do what we can to be more health than past generations. Yet, any time to drive around you see new assisted living facilities being built. Nursing Homes, Adult Day-Care Centers, and home health agencies are all around. More and more people need long-term care and because many of those people had a lack of advance planning spouses and other family members become part-time or even full-time caregivers. Do they even know what they are doing?

While you want to avoid having a family member or spouse be a caregiver what happens if it is already too late for advance planning? The issue of training caregivers so they don’t hurt themselves or the person they are caring for is a big concern. Read this article about the development of training the caregiver:

http://www.nextavenue.org/reason-teach-cpr-caregiving/

The best way to avoid a family member being burdened with the prospect of being a caregiver while dealing with their own career, family and responsibilities is an advance plan – before you need any long-term care. The financial costs and burdens of aging will impact your loved ones and your savings. However, affordable Long-Term Care insurance will make this so much easier. These plans will safeguard your future retirement savings and ease the burdens on family. This will allow your family to be loving and supporting and not burdened with the physical, emotional and financial burdens that come from extended care.

Many times you read articles about how LTC insurance is expensive. It is not. It is actually very affordable as long as you are in fairly good health and not very old. Most people start looking at adding long-term care insurance to their retirement plan in their 40’s or 50’s. At that age premiums are low and your health is good. Shared plans that allow benefits to be shared together for a couple are available and make plans even more flexible and affordable. Single premium “hybrid” plans which offer death benefits if you are lucky enough to never require care are also available. This is why you should speak with a specialist. This is usually not a financial advisor or general insurance agent. The American Association for Long Term Care Insurance, a national consumer education and advocacy group, suggests consumers work with a specialist. Generally, that means a person with not just years of experience but experience with at least 500 clients in Long-Term Care Insurance. They should also work with all the top insurance companies as well.

Nobody likes to buy insurance, however, nobody enjoys burdening their family or wiping out a good chunk of their savings either. The peace-of-mind of having a plan in place is tremendous. Act before you retire.


Posted: March 10th 2017