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Have the Talk: Your Parents' Wishes

Are you caring for aging parents – or do you expect to be in the next few years? Here are some helpful tips on how to begin a dialogue about their financial and long-term care needs and wishes

PRLog - Aug. 14, 2014 - KENTWOOD, Mich. -- Watching your parents grow older can be a gift – but one that also comes with increased responsibility. Not only might the dynamics of your relationship shift, but as your parents age you might find yourself taking on a larger role in their care and finances.

Here are some helpful tips on how to begin a dialogue around these important issues, as well as specific topics to cover during your discussion.

How do I broach the conversation?
It’s important to make sure your parents know that you are serving as a partner in their financial care and decisions – you are not assuming control. You can let them know that by being prepared, their health care, finances and legacy goals can be carried out as they want. That way, when the time comes to make any decisions, both parties feel ready to do so.

How will they handle finances?
In addition to ensuring your parents have a plan to cover their daily needs, you’ll also want to look at expenses (such as a mortgage) that would still need to be covered in the event that something happens. There are life insurance options to consider, as you and your parents will want to determine how much the surviving spouse may need if one of your parents passes away.

You’ll also want to make sure your parents have the appropriate amount of health insurance, as well as additional savings for medical expenses not covered by insurance (including emergency care, hospital visits and preventive care).

How will they handle long-term care?
Long-term care is the assistance your parents could need when they are not able to perform activities of daily living such as bathing or dressing. According to the Department of Health & Human Services, nearly 40% of individuals over age 65 will spend some time in a nursing home. These individuals can either incorporate these costs into their budget and “self-insure,” or transfer the risk to an insurance company.

Planning ahead may include a discussion of the type of long-term care insurance your parents would prefer if it were needed (home health care versus a nursing home), plus how they intend to manage the expense.

Together, you and your parents can help protect their retirement savings from long term care expenses, as well as help protect family members from having to shoulder the cost all on their own.

What do they want their legacy to be?
To maintain control over who receives your parents’ assets – and when – in the event of their death, it’s important to begin discussing their legacy vision. Do they want to help their grandchildren pay for college? Set aside money for a favorite charity? Knowing what they want to have happen enables you to begin planning for it.

Of course, every family is different, and the decision to discuss these topics is a personal one. But by taking the time now to prepare for the unexpected, you will ensure you’re ready to face the future and can get back to enjoying the time you have with one another now.

Your Edward Jones financial advisor is available to meet with you and your family to help you refine and communicate your financial strategy. For more information or to schedule a family meeting, contact me today at (616) 281-9026 or visit https://www.edwardjones.com/en_US/fa/index.html&CIRN=....

Edward Jones does not provide legal or estate planning advice. You should consult with your qualified estate-planning attorney on your specific situation.

Edward Jones: Mark Grooters - Financial Advisor

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Source:Edward Jones: Mark Grooters
Location:Kentwood - Michigan - United States
Industry:Family, Finance
Tags:edward jones, long term care, Legacy Planning, estate planning, ltc insurance
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