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It’s funny how we see ourselves today and make assumptions about how we’ll be in the future. How many times have I heard “I exercise, eat right, and am in great health” from many of the people that I speak with? While it may be true that a person’s overall health is ideal for their age today, in no way does that translate to the continuation of pristine health in the future? We’ve all been exposed to friends and family members or people in the news who have had their health change on a dime…. whether it’s due to an out-of-the-blue diagnosis, a fall, a gradual cognitive decline, or a myriad of other possible conditions.

It’s the not believing, and therefore the not planning for the likely decline of health over time that causes an eruption of consequences. The impact of these consequences is far-reaching, both financially, physically, and emotionally, mostly to the family members of the person with the health disruption.

Long term care planning is all about considering the likelihood of growing old, becoming frail and requiring assistance. Protecting loved ones is at the crux of this. What if you’re wrong in your assumptions, and you DO require assistance at some point? There are options available to you today to address these potential consequences with long term care planning.

For example, one concern that I often hear is “What if one of us never needs care?” Shared riders provide a solution to that concern. In addition, hybrid long term care insurance options or life insurance with LTC riders also address the situation where a person never needs to tap into a policy’s benefits. With hybrid policies and life insurance policies with LTC riders, beneficiaries inherit a tax-free death benefit.

Rather than betting the house that good health will continue indefinitely, it’s important to consider a formal plan that addresses an extended care need in the future. Your family should thank you!