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How To Proactively Plan To Reduce the Impact of Caring For Elderly Family Members

After Dad died someone needed to step into his shoes to care for Mom. As the daughter with a large house, older kids and a stable income, this responsibility has fallen to me. COVID made it nearly impossible to find a qualified caregiver and it also highlighted the risks of assisted living facilities. Thus, for the foreseeable future, my 80 year- old mother will be living with me. While having Mom at home brings many blessings, it also brings stressors – like impacts on my time and income, impacts on my relationships with my kids and friends, and honestly, somedays there are serious impacts on my level of patience. While much has

been written about our nation’s need to help young mothers in the workplace, it is becoming increasingly important to talk about the crisis facing the other end of the spectrum: America’s working daughters, many of whom are also mothers.

According to the 2010 Census, there were 44 million unpaid eldercare providers work in the U.S. With the impact of the Silver Tsunami – 90 million Americans hitting retirement age in 2016 and beyond - this number will only increase. The impact on working daughters is significant. In addition to lost wages, Social Security and retirement benefits drop when women earn less due to caregiving responsibilities. And that’s only for the women who are fortunate enough to stay in their current positions. Many must quit their jobs or take less demanding, lower-paying work so that they can care for their elderly family members. Unfortunately, without a good understanding of their parent’s resources, many caregivers end up paying out of their own pockets to care for parents.

By planning in advance, you can mitigate the risk that caregiving an elderly parent will have on your family.

It begins with getting comfortable talking with your parents (or your children if you are in the senior generation), openly and honestly about late in life care. When families work together there doesn’t need to be a burden, but instead the whole family can create a plan that most effectively uses the family’s resources to create an outcome that supports everyone. At Treveri Law, PC, we can help your family mediate and facilitate this conversation if necessary. This is what sets us apart from other lawyers in the community who are typically only focused on creating legal documents to pass on financial assets after you (or senior family members) die.

When done this way, estate planning is not just for the wealthy; it’s for all families that want to work together to use their resources in support of intergenerational well-being. Call us today at 505-835-6580.

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