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If You Can Go Home for Thanksgiving

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A family says Thanksgiving grace, in 1942. (Photo: Marjory Collins/Office of War Information) A family says Thanksgiving grace, in 1942. (Photo: Marjory Collins/Office of War Information)

We first ran this article Nov. 20, 2012. It will probably still be equally important on Nov. 20, 2102, when the babies at today’s holiday tables are getting up in years. Of course, this year, COVID-19 puts the idea of going back home in a new light. You may not be able to visit your parents or other aging loved ones at all. But, if you can enter homes, Jesse Slome’s advice becomes all the more important…

The season starting with Thanksgiving and lasting until New Year’s has become America’s unofficial Long-Term Care Need Assessment Period.

Jesse Slome, executive director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance (AALTCI), has put out a guide to assessing the well-being of parents and other older relatives that could be useful both to consumers and their retirement and LTCI advisors.

(Related: 5 Simple Gifts)

Slome said adult children or other caregiver candidates who live far from their loved ones and go home for the holidays should consider taking the following steps:

  • Look for unopened mail, especially unpaid bills.
  • See if the loved one has lost weight, and see if the refrigerator or pantry are full of spoiled food.
  • Prepare a list of medications being taken and physician contact information.
  • Write down the make, model and license plate number for the loved one’s car.
  • Write down the policy number and claim department contact information for any long-term care insurance (LTCI) policy that might be available.

Slome noted that LTCI carriers get a 15% increase in questions about benefits during the period following the holidays.

—Read How to Talk About Long-Term Care Planning Now, on ThinkAdvisor.

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