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More people in New Jersey, nationwide, becoming 'elder orphans'

As people in New Jersey reach their elder years, living alone becomes more difficult. People who were once able to live independently now may find that they need assistance taking care of themselves and their homes. Some people may even need in-home health care. It can be a blow to one's ego to find that they need help with basic activities, but it is something that a person should anticipate might happen to them some day.

When planning for care in your elder years, people used to rely on family to help them when they needed it. However, what if a person is not married or does not have children? These "elder orphans" may face problems when it comes to elder care. In fact, the AARP reports that as many as 8.6 million individuals who are above 65-years-old fall into this category. And, it is anticipated that by 2050, this number will have grown two-fold -- something Baby Boomers should keep in mind.

For this reason, the home care provider industry is increasingly seeing more business, in order to meet the needs of those who do not have anyone to care for them. In-home care has the advantage of not being as expensive as living in an assisted living facility or paying for skilled nursing care. Therefore, it is important to plan ahead.

Through care planning, people without a spouse or children can still make arrangements for in-home health care and life-care. This includes planning on how they will pay for such care. Some people may have insurance to cover such costs, but others may not. For those who do not, an elder law professional may be able to provide advice on other means a person may have at their disposal in order to pay for the care they need as they age.

Source: The Olympian, "More people aging alone as 'elder orphans'," Anna Schlecht, Jan. 3, 2018

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