10 Elder Care planning steps to take if you are turning 65 this year
Steps 1-2: Social Security and Medicare Enrollment
The first and most important step in Elder Care planning is to begin planning ahead for social security, followed by the second step of taking actions in preparing to enroll in Medicare. Reaching the age of 65 is fast approaching, and it is imperative to devise a social security plan along with all the minute details outlining the retirement stage. Once an individual reaches the full retirement age, they may reap the full benefit of their social security pension, which may constitute retirement, supplemental, disability, and survivors benefits. It is recommended that an individual awaits their 70th birthday, for they will then be able to receive much greater benefits than the quantity of benefits they were receiving when they turned 65. These benefits are extended to Medicare Part A and Medicare Part B, which provide hospital and medical insurance, respectively. Once an individual enrolls in Social Security, they will automatically be enrolled in Medicaid Part A, which pertains to hospital insurance. In the case that the elder has health insurance of their own from employment, they may choose not to partake in Medicare Part B. Doing so, however, will impose higher surcharges. In addition, for every year the elder chooses not to enroll in Medicare Part B, they will be charged an extra 10% in premium fees. Alternatively, an elder may also choose to start cashing in on their benefits at a much earlier stage, with the downside that their benefits will be approximately 40% lower than if they claimed their pension at the full retirement age. These benefits will remain at their reduced rate until the elder passes. It is crucial for each household to establish a conclusive arrangement for social security. The elder and loved ones may wish to consider the financial aspect of this plan, so as to determine which retirement age is most suitable for the elder. The intent to retire at a later point in life would decrease the number of payments received, yet each payment would each be greater in quantitative value. Distinct circumstances call for a uniquely tailored plan of action, thus an esteemed Elder Care Attorney will be able to provide guidance and assistance based on each specific circumstance.
Step 3: Long-Term Care Insurance
The third step in Elder Care Planning pertains to taking Long-Term Care Insurance into consideration. At the age of 65, one may believe that they will not require a nursing home or assisted living care anytime soon, however the future is unknown and it would be extremely beneficial to begin planning now. Even if one is not entering a nursing home in the upcoming period of time, it is still important to consider the future and have all of your plans well established before it comes to the point of actually needing the care.Without having a Long-Term Care Policy established, the cost for entering such care is immensely grand. This out- of-pocket price can be approximately $140,000, which is quite a lot of money to pay at such an age. However, with a Long-Term Care Policy, this price would drastically decrease and become much more manageable. Approximately 1 in 4 individuals now who are 65 years of age will have to pay a value greater than $50,000 in lifetime out-of-pocket care costs. It is important to consider the fact that the older you get, the greater your premiums become. That being said, the premiums you will be required to pay at 65 will be around 10% higher than what they were at the age of 64. An Elder Care Attorney can create a plan of action pertaining to Long-Term Insurance in order to prepare for the potential need of medical care within a nursing home or through assisted living programs.
Steps 4-5: Property Tax Breaks and Travel Discounts
Turning 65 gives you the perfect opportunity to participate in the fourth and fifth step of Elder Care Planning, which includes obtaining a property tax break and receiving travel discounts. Upon turning the age of 65, it is possible that you will be granted a property tax break on your owned home. Although the deductions may not be grand values, it is important to realize that they do add up. This ends up saving you and your loved ones quite some money by receiving such deductions after the age of 65. According to New York State law, residents are eligible in reducing their homes’ assessed value by approximately 50% based upon their earned income. In order to qualify for this seniors must be at least 65 years of age and must have a specific income that meets the designated set value. In most cases, the maximum income limit for New York City would be about $50,000 in order to still qualify. In order to discover if you or your loved ones qualify, it can be effective to reach out to an esteemed Estate Lawyer for some guidance on the manner and assistance in filling out the forms for the property tax break. Another benefit to turning 65 is receiving a variety of travel discounts. This means that numerous airlines will provide discounts in order to grant you the opportunity to visit loved ones or even go on a much needed vacation for some self-appreciation. Currently, Delta, American Airlines, and United offer discounts for those over the age of 65. There are specified senior fares for certain destinations, which can be quite cost efficient when traveling. These special deals will certainly provide you with a well deserved vacation after all of those years of hard work. It is your birthday after all, so be sure to treat yourself with both a property tax break and a travel discount.
Steps 6-7: Planning for the Future- Will and Power of Attorney Creation
The sixth and seventh steps of Elder Care planning pertain to identifying your wishes for your future, as well as creating both a will and power of attorney. Upon turning 65, you should begint to have a firm idea of what your wishes are in relation to your healthcare, finances, and estates. That being said, this is the perfect time to reach out for some guidance when it comes to planning for your future and selecting an individual you know you can trust to carry out all of your needs and wishes. It is important to create a will, as this document would ensure that all of your specific preferences and desires are carried out exactly to your liking. The will can contain information based on the manner in which you wish your children were cared for or your assets were distributed after your passing. Without a documented will, the state will be responsible for deciding how your estate will be handled. Oftentimes, the state does not follow through with your desired plan of action for your estate. Thus, it is better to reach out to an Elder care Attorney and begin drafting a will as soon as possible. This would also be the perfect time to create a power of attorney document. A power of attorney allows the principal to appoint a specific agent who will act on their behalf in the case that they become incapacitated. This individual will prioritize the needs and preferences of the principal by making imperative decisions. These decisions pertain to finances, healthcare, recommending a guardian, and much more. This will guarantee that your loved one’s wishes are met through the actions of financial security and effective healthcare choices when the principal becomes unable to make the decisions on their own. There are four different types when it comes to the power of attorney documentation. These types include general power of attorney, durable power of attorney, special power of attorney, and springing durable power of attorney. The Elder Care Attorney will be sure to provide guidance in the process of selecting the best type of power of attorney for your specified circumstance in regards to personal and financial matters.
Steps 8-10: Medicare Varieties- Copays and Deductibles
The last three steps in Elder Care Planning upon turning the age of 65 involves understanding the difference between Medigap and Medicare Advantage, selecting which one is best for your situation, as well as picking the best Medicare Part D plan. Although Medicare is an effective health insurance, it will not cover all of the costs of your healthcare. Given this, you will be responsible for paying copays and deductibles, which can add up to quite large sums. Medigap is a Medicare Supplement Insurance Policy. This will cover the additional costs that were not initially being covered by the original Medicare. It is important to note that Medigap does not cover Long-Term Care, vision acre, or hearing care. However, there are numerous varieties when it comes to the Medigap plan, thus an Estate Lawyer can assist you in selecting the plan that most effectively meets all of your needs. Medicare Advantage is another private insurance, however it is used in place of the Original Medicare and covers the same items. The Medicare Advantage plan does cover more features than the Original Medicare plan in most cases, as it covers vision and hearing costs. The difference between Medigap and Medicare Advantage is that Medigap offers the same items as Medicare, but covers the costs that Medicare failed to cover. Medicare Advantage includes more items, but does not pay for the costs of copays and deductibles. Medicare Part D pertains specifically to covering the costs of your prescription drugs. Each medicare Part D pkan has different structures of copays and deductibles, which makes it difficult to independently identify which plan would be the best for you and your loved ones. Thus, the Elder Care Attorney would describe the differences between all of the plans and explain which of the options best correlates to your economic situation, as well as your overall health in terms of medical care expenses. It is much better to get started as soon as possible, as there will be a penalty on Medicare Part D if you decide to enroll at a much later time after your 65th birthday.
For Elder Care Planning information please contact the Law Office of Inna Fershteyn at 718-333-2394 to best prepare for selecting an effective Medicare plan and filing all of your legal documents related to Social Security, retirement, will creation, and power of attorney.