Archives- February, 2016
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Most people are terrified of being forced into a “home” in their old age. They imagine a life in which they are fully aware and able with some minor age related health issues but left alone to rot without visitors or the comforts of home. Most people want to die at home surrounded by familiar surroundings and loved ones. We have all heard stories of an older person making their family promise to never admit them into a nursing home. But a loved one may need that level of care, and well-meaning family members are not always able to provide the needed care. A doctor shares his experience in, When to Ignore a Promise to ‘Never Put Me in a Home’ which ran
My Social Security
I love the Social Security Administration website. (And yes, I can here you groan) But they must have the best web designers. The site is easy to use and full of information. And now you can manage your own account and check in on your benefits. We are all worried that Social Security won't be there when we are ready, that it will be bankrupt but thus far that doesn't appear to be happening. Reality is that Social Security remains the primary income source for most Americans in retirement.
So be informed about it. Get the most out of it. Make sure you have good information about it. On your account you can:
Keep track of your earnings and verify them ev
Did you know that Arizonan’s can download a Life Care Planning Packet for FREE at: https://www.azag.gov/seniors/life-care-planning
The website has general information about Arizona laws related to future incapacity and the importance of life care planning.
The Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on the Life Care Planning page is excellent including answering questions on how to fill out the documents, if a notary is needed, who can be witness and where to keep the documents.
The Life Care Planning Packet contains the following documents and instructions:
Durable Health Care Power of Attorney
Durable Mental Health Care Power of Attorney
Living Will (End of Life Care)
Alicia Kapa and her good friend started this amazing project that you can watch on You Tube at Wheely Wacky Adventures. This video is a compilation of their activities so far. I expect they will keep pushing and discovering more accessibility and acceptance that the world has to offer. These two good friends challenge our assumptions and behavior and remind us to simply be human. They have a great sense of humor and are fun to watch. Never judge a book by it's cover.
Seven out of ten people will need long-term care sometime after 65. Since Medicare only covers 100 days that number is shocking. The cost of long-term care is staggering. The video is a summary by Christine Romans who looks at the numbers behind long-term care. After watching call you financial advisor if this isn’t built into your plan.
Webster Financial Bank’s video provides a quick synopsis of the perpetrators and potential scams Older Americans may face. The video is not comprehensive but offers a great overview of what to look for and increase awareness. If you or your loved are concerned about any of the issues raised in the video it is worth further investigation to protect a person’s assets.
Life Care Planning is for everyone. All adults need to plan for their future health care. Kaiser Permanente has resources online to use. For state specific forms go to azag.gov. No matter get it done. This video explains the importance of planning in about 2 minutes. Check out the Kaiser Permanente You Tube channel it has a ton of health related information.
We love this campaign!!! You should check it out. Cerebral Palsy is a group of disorders that affect a person’s ability to move and maintain balance and posture. CP is the most common motor disability in childhood. Cerebral means having to do with the brain. Palsy means weakness or problems with using the muscles. Often it is accompanied by intellectual challenges or seizures as well. We will be publishing videos from this campaign all year because really people are our most valuable resource and the best way to start a conversation is to, “Just Say Hi.”
According to NPR, “About 5.3 million Americans have Alzheimer's disease, the latest statistics suggest, and it's probably about as common on Native American reservations as anywhere else. But a diagnosis in Indian Country is rarer, say mental health workers. That's likely at least partly because of a cultural belief — many Native American communities don't recognize dementia as a disorder.” In this story they explore the cultural and other challenges in Indian Country.
I went to this amazing seminar on housing and aging with speaker, Kathleen Pritchard, from Legg Mason presenting their findings. She explained clearly the impact of living longer and considering the Go-Go retirement year AND the Slow-Go AND No-Go years. This video is a fabulous summary to get you started with better financial planning.
Legg Mason in collaboration with Johns Hopkins University School for Nursing has developed comprehensive information on housing options in retirement and the associated financial planning implications.
Check it out here: http://wealthmanagement.com/fix-my-practice/now-what-not-strategy-evaluating-senior-housing-options-crisis
The first Wednesday of October each year is Worldwide Cerebral Palsy Day. Keep this in mind next October and don’t stare, “Just Say Hi.”
Did You Know? Social Security Has An Awesome Website
Estimate retirement benefits with their Retirement Estimator.
Apply for benefits.
Find out if you qualify for benefits.
File an appeal.
And much more.
Social Security publishes numerous Pamphlets and Fact Sheets on every topic. They make it easy to find the answer to any question. For example, Benefits for Children, Social Security is Important to African Americans, Disability for Wounded Warriors and What Every Woman Should Know. In addition to their FAQs page with all the basics. Be careful you can spend hours on this website!!!
Certified Financial Planner Board (CFPD): Financial Self-Defense Guide for Seniors
The CFPD offers many tools for navigating our increasingly complicated financial world and to protect consumers from exploitation. Financial exploitation is becoming an epidemic as our society ages and thieves become more sophisticated. Often times as elder law attorneys, we are asked by family members how to talk to their aging parents or relatives about financial choices they are making that seem risky or suspect. It is a delicate balance between treating a loved ones choices with respect and looking out for their welfare. This Financial Self-Defense Guide is a good tool for starting that discussion
The position of women in society is changing dramatically. Coupled with our population aging this has a significant impact socially and economically. Here are a few surprising facts:
More women graduate from college than men.
In 60% of households women are breadwinners or co-breadwinners.
Women start businesses at 2x the rate of men.
Women are emerging in leadership positions at an ever increasing rate.
On average women live 6-8 years longer than men.
14 years is the average length of time a woman will outlive her husband.
What does this mean for women, the economy and our aging population?
Today 11% of women age 65, or older, are poor compared to 7% of men. Fortunate