Long Term Care Planning
As this discussion has progressed a lot of this is turning to basically, “Oh my gosh, how in the heck are we going to pay for this?” is what I’m hearing. So, Herschel has worked his way through the continuum here. We started out with estate planning and planning for incapacity, we got our trust in place, we got our power of attorney in place. We avoided probate when Nell passed away, she passed away everything was nicely titled in the trust. We moved everything over from her trust to Herschel’s trust, like it said to do. So we avoided that probate process. Herschel thus far, thanks in part to Laura’s services, has been cooperative or has at least come around on some things, so we’ve also avoided the need for guardianship. Of course the whole purpose of doing power of attorneys in the first place is to avoid guardianship but it doesn’t always work. If we’ve got a client with dementia; maybe yes she has named her daughter as her power of attorney, she’s also named the guy who came by to clean the gutters as the power of attorney, she’s also named the bum down the street or maybe the bum son as the power of attorney. So, even if we have some of this advance planning in place, it doesn’t mean that you’re always going to be able to avoid the guardianship or conservatorship process but thankfully with Herschel we have been able to do that. Now we’re moving on to public benefits, planning for long term care. Herschel has had the in home care that was provided by Nancy, he had long term care insurance for that. He had that long term care insurance. The way that long term care insurance works is that if I meet the criteria in the policy; heard someone over here say check your policy, very specific and Nancy was also spot on when she said as an insurance company they’re going to try not to pay. But if you meet the criteria, the way it works is most of these policies are set up with a daily rate, you might know a lot of this, say $200 a day that it’s going to pay for long term care. It just comes to the client or the nursing home resident, or maybe it’s set up to go straight to the assisted living, or the nursing home, or the care agency. But it’s just a cash benefit that’s all it is at the end of the day, 30 days this month and you’ve got x dollars per month and this month here’s your check for x amount. Herschel had that long term care policy, a lot of long term care policies that you will see will be unlimited where you pay in and you can draw on that policy for the rest of your life. Obviously that’s going to be a more expensive policy than policy that is set up, we used to always see 3 year policies when the Medicaid look back was 3 years, sometimes you’d see 5 years. Now the Medicaid look back has extended to 5 years, which we will talk about what means in a few minutes, now it might be more common to see a 5 year policy. Whatever that is, Herschel’s policy was 3 years, let’s say he was home for 3 years he has now exhausted that policy. If he had not, as long as his policy said, “we will pay for in home care, we’ll pay for assisted living, we’ll pay for nursing care”. Let’s say that he only used 2 years of that policy on the in home care, he could get the last year at assisted living when he moved in to that facility.