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Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Long-Term Care Costs Raising Eyebrows

The rapid aging of the population is one of the most amazing demographic trends of our times, with the “oldest old,” those 85 and up, being the fastest growing group among us.
There are many positives that go along with increased longevity, but it must be carefully planned for in advance.

At any given time one out of every four individuals who have reached the age of 85 are residing in a nursing home, and the costs associated with nursing home care are considerable. Each year the Metlife Mature Market Institute puts the matter of long-term care costs under a microscope, and the 2010 findings were quite profound.

The average cost for a yearlong stay in a private room in a nursing home in 2010 was $83,500, and this represented a 4.6% increase over the previous year. When you consider the fact that the average nursing home stay is about two and a half years you may be looking at a very significant expense late in your life.

According to the United States Department of Health and Human Services 70% of people who reach the age of 65 will need some form of long-term care eventually. The same MetLife study revealed that the average annual cost for a year residing in an assisted living facility was nearly $40,000, and this represented a 5.2% increase over 2009. So these costs are very high now, but they are also trending upward.

The cost of long-term care is something that you may want to keep in mind when you are planning for the future. To devise a strategy that will enable you to address these costs, arrange for a consultation with an experienced elder law attorney. He or she will analyze your specific situation, take heed of your wishes, and give you expert, personalized advice.

Experienced estate planning attorneys of the Ryan Hicks Cumpton & Cumpton LLP offer estate planning and business planning resources to residents of Mobile AL.