Clients ask me all the time how best to protect their assets from the rising costs of long-term care. That could lead to a conversation about irrevocable trusts, qualified irrevocable annuities, Medicaid asset protection trusts, etc. But there is one simple act everyone can do to potentially save tens of thousands of dollars: consolidate your assets in one or two locations.
When we are involved in "crisis planning", someone has already been admitted to the long tern care facility and are paying the bill privately. That bill could be anywhere from $5500 to over $8000 dollars a month! Thus, time is of the essence in re-structuring your assets to secure Medicaid eligibility. The first thing we do is create a List of Assets. This is a list of everything you own: real estate, bank accounts, IRAs or 401Ks, insurance policies, certificates of deposit, etc. If each asset is being held in a different institution, the process of restructuring can be complex, tedious and most devastating, time-consuming!
If the vast majority of your assets are held at one or two institutions, the process is quick and easy. If not, we have seen the process take up to 3 months. That could cost you over $24,000!!!
My advice, let's look at your assets today to see if there are ways we can consolidate accounts and be prepared if the need for long-term care arises. We can work with your present financial adviser or help you choose a financial adviser that can help with this process. When preparing and implementing an asset protection plan, time is money!