Jim and Judy called because they wanted to make some changes to their wills. In their late 70’s but still pretty healthy, they have a son who is struggling financially with 2 children in college and another with special needs. They wanted to provide for their grandchildren and also wished to make some other modifications to their estate plan.
As I always do, after we addressed their needs, I turned to the topic of long term care. “How do you plan to pay for care should either of you need it,” I asked. Jim proceeded to tell me about how they had looked at long term care insurance a number of years ago and opted not to buy it. As he was telling me this, he sounded a little bit regretful.
“I don’t know,” he said. “Maybe we made the wrong choice, but it’s too late now. We’ll have to just pay for it ourselves as it comes. I have invested our assets and done pretty well. We have approximately $1,500,000 so I guess we’ll have to draw down on that money if and when we need care.
I then told Jim that it might not be too late to get long term care coverage, but not the type that he had looked at years ago. He was correct that it was too late for that now. He and Judy cannot get past the underwriting process at their current ages.
I asked Jim about his and Judy’s health. He told me that besides his high blood pressure and Judy’s slightly arthritic hip they were generally in good shape. They do not currently need any assistance with what we call the activities of daily living (ie. eating, bathing, toileting, walking, or dressing) and do not anticipate it any time soon.
“There are some options that I am sure you have never heard anywhere before that are still available to you,” I told Jim, “even at your ages”. His ears perked up when I said that. Next week I’ll share with you what those options are.