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Life Health > Health Insurance

NAIC, Amy Grant offer advice to ‘Sandwich Generation’

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The so-called Sandwich Generation is not a happy bunch, given that both their parents and their kids are eating up a lot of their resources in both time and money. 

While that’s hardly news, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners has recruited performer Amy Grant in a campaign aimed at offering advice to members of this financially undernourished generation.

Not surprisingly, insurance, NAIC says, can be one of the solutions to the problem. 

Citing a study commissioned by the Pew Research Center, NAIC pointed to some of the more salient statistics. Among them: 21 percent of respondents aged 40-59 were paying at least some of the expenses for a parent age 65 or older. More than double that — 48 percent — were footing the bills for at least one adult child. That’s up from 42 percent seven years ago. 

Among parents providing primary support to an adult child, 62 percent say it’s because that child is still in school. But that leaves more than a third (36 percent) who say they’re paying the child’s way for another reason. 

And one out of every seven was financially supporting both an aging parent and a child (who’s obviously not getting any younger either). 

Considering all these unpleasant facts, the NAIC has come up with a resource kit called Get Ready (for turning 50). The kit offers tips and tools such as a checklist of actions to take if a lack of insurance is responsible for some aspect of financial instability. 

Among the actions the checklist suggests is a discussion with adult children concerning who will pay copays and deductibles on health insurance after college. If those children are still living under their parents’ roof, it also suggests having the same chat about car insurance. 

Those aging parents aren’t left out, either; the bill-paying sandwichers are also urged to make sure their parents are enrolled in Medicare before they hit 65, and to investigate options on Medicare supplement insurance. 

Lest there be a question about income in old age, the checklist also suggests considering the possibility of purchasing an annuity. 

To make the resource kit more visible to sandwichers, the NAIC has also partnered with Grant to provide guidance based on her own personal experience in caring for aging and ailing parents.


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