Important Financial Questions to Consider When Preparing Parents for Long-Term Care

Oftentimes, it is up to an adult child to investigate how long-term care needs will be financed for a parent. How do you know what your parents can afford so you can help them make appropriate long-term care choices? 

Here are a few questions to consider that will help:

What are their assets? It’s important to establish roughly how much money your parents have in cash, investments, and Social Security.

Do they anticipate needing financial support? We’re living longer than ever, which means more people are outliving their retirement savings. Ask your parents whether they believe they have enough to sustain themselves for the rest of their lives. If not, how much support will they need?

What types of insurance do they have? Understanding their policies can save you time and money in the long run.

Will they share passwords and account numbers? Ask your parents to give you a copy of all important account numbers and passwords, along with contact information for financial advisers and lawyers. If they have a safety deposit box containing estate plan documents, jewelry or other valuables, find out where the key is stored. This will make it easier to sort out their affairs if they become ill.

Have they signed a power of attorney? Make sure they have, so that you know who is responsible for making decisions on their behalf in the event of a medical emergency.