The Price of Love: Retirees Paying for Aging Parents’ Healthcare

The Price of Love: Retirees Paying for Aging Parents’ Healthcare

Our featured article comes from Fran O’Brien, president of North America personal risk services at Chubb.

She considers an unexpected burden arising from America’s longevity trend: retirees who must fund the healthcare needs of their aged parents. For many, it’s a difficult burden that needs a clearer focus among the financial advisors who serve them.

In tandem with an ever-aging population, a revealing statistic emerges: the US Bureau of Labor says that if you want a job, find training as a personal-care aide – it’s the fastest-expanding job category in the country. At the same time, home-health aide comes in number four on the job growth chart. Combined, these two job categories are forecasted to add 1.2 million vacancies by 2026.

It’s an encouraging development: the elderly need care, specialists are appearing to help and job growth is finding support. However, someone needs to foot the bill. If elderly retirees have income sources and insurance in place to meet the expenses, there is little need for worry. Absent those preparations, younger family members – who in fact may be seniors themselves – will be forced to step up. 

Advisors who see clients headed for this situation must raise the issue and help them develop financial plans to meet these future healthcare expenses.

O’Brien is also concerned about an issue that might escape first notice. Hiring a personal care or home-health aide introduces liability: anyone employed by the family is protected under the umbrellas of workmen’s compensation, health and safety standards and myriad legal requirements and risks. If an employee sues the family or the company providing elderly care management services, the costs of legal counsel alone could be prohibitive.

For more information, please read:
Parents’ Health Care Spending Can Be a Risk to Clients’ Retirement | ThinkAdvisor

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