Is it always better for family member to have their own funds to pay for their care?


I'm not sure how to fully describe what I'm asking but I'll give it a try.
My 90 year old father is living in his own home. He does have memory loss and is dependent on family members to pay his bills, get groceries, do laundry, etc. His physical health over all is pretty good. He is using a cane more. He is no longer driving and just retired from barbering after 67 years.
His desire is to stay in his home. Fortunately he has funds to have paid care if and when it is needed.

A couple of siblings have mentioned to me that he should have made it so his money was "safe" so that if he had to go to a nursing home, he would not have to pay for that care out of his own money. My take is that having his own money he has more choices for care and for a longer time to be able to stay in his home.

They claim they are not interested in what they would be "inheriting" but the idea of paying out of his own care in a nursing home bothers them. My Dad never had an interest in retaining his assets/money to be able to give to his children.

I look at the money his been able to save as something fortunate as it may give us more alternatives for his care. That I think should be the priority and not how much is left at the end of his life for distributing to those who happen to be related to him (though they claim that is not what interests them.) He came in this life with nothing and if he leaves this life with nothing (which technically everyone does as they no longer need worldly goods), so be it. It's more important if the care and where he receives is in line with his wishes and I think having his own money to do that is more possible than being dependent on
Medicaid to pay the bills. I'm not saying nursing homes don't do a good job, but it's nice to be able to have other choices, if possible. And at some time he would have to go someone else to live as he could no longer be cared at home and it comes out of his own pocket, so be it. Am I missing something in my thinking?

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.


If I've said it once I've said it 100x since my parents started needing extra care. Money is power and choices! My parents were extremely tight with money. Lots of times growing up I was resentful of it - second hand cloths, powered milk and no one could make a single box of Mac and cheese stretch like my mother. Now I am able to hire help, pick nice places for her to live and make sure she has whatever she wants - with her own money. Knowing what I know now I thank God for the stingy choices my parents made as it has kept me from having to put my mom - and dad when he was still alive - in some awful medicad dictated home.
Your dad made his own money and jmo but with good advice and judgment hopefully it will allow for him to live his final years as he'd like. Lol - I say good judgement cause my mom when through a phase where she was writing check to any and every charity - many bogus - who would mail her a request! But that's another story...
Helpful Answer (3)

hello1951, you are so correct, when an elder has saved for these "rainy days" that gives them more choices on where to live in their remaining years. Your Dad actually is helping the grown children make easier choices for him.

By some of your siblings saying that Dad needs to keep his money "safe" are they meaning defrauding the government as it is us taxpayers that help Medicaid keep on ticking through State/Federal taxes. In a way I can understand their point, and if everyone did what they wanted to do, our taxes would go sky high.

If Dad wants to keep living at home and he can afford around the clock care, that would be great. And if he decides the house is becoming too much for him to think about maintaining, then his next step could be Assisted Living which would be less expensive than around the clock care. Isn't it great that he does have choices :)
Helpful Answer (1)

Helpful Answer (1)

Duplicate post in discussions.
Helpful Answer (1)

(Lass, I believe the sibs are referring to trusts etc to protect assets from medicaid evaluation.)

HELLO ... I agree with your evaluation and approach. My Mom had personal funds. It allowed us to have in home care and ultimately assisted living - memory care. Ditto for MIL and an aunt. Personal funds DID allow for choices. Your sibs and many others somehow think that end of life nursing home care should be free. Medicaid does this for the truly indigent. But those who have assets are expected to pay their own way --- and they should. My Mom's savings allowed us to pay $84,000/year for one and a half years. And each time I wrote that check I said a prayer of thanks that there were assets to provide round the clock care, activities, etc at a facility I was happy with.

Avoid the family drama over what your Dad didn't do. It's too late now and not your battle. Good luck with Dad.
Helpful Answer (2)

"A couple of siblings have mentioned to me that he should have made it so his money was "safe" so that if he had to go to a nursing home, he would not have to pay for that care out of his own money."

I can't make any sense out of this statement. I'm not sure what your siblings mean by making his money "safe". When someone goes into a nursing home they either pay for it themselves (which drains one's money very quickly) or Medicaid pays for it because the person can't afford a nursing home. If your dad needed a nursing home and has the funds to pay for it he would be expected to pay for it out of his money. Or he could spend down his money in anticipation of going into a nursing home. Many elders do this by hiring in-home care.

I can't think of a scenario where your dad would need a nursing home and would not be obligated to pay for it out his own money because his money was "safe". Does "safe" mean hidden?
Helpful Answer (1)

This question has been closed for answers. Ask a New Question.