This list provides links to all of the online tools, documents, and web pages that were listed in your handout from this workshop. They are listed in the same order as in your handout, under the titles for the tasks we discussed. Please note that some of the tasks did not have links, so they have been omitted here.
1. Create a master list of important info.
- Estate Planning: Your Records and Information, University of Kentucky Extension PDF document, includes most of the categories suggested above. Print the file and fill out the forms. The publication was written for people preparing to meet with their attorney, but you need the same information for your master list. http://www.ca.uky.edu/agc/pubs/fcs5/fcs5422/fcs5422.pdf
- Your Personal Financial Inventory, The Vanguard Group: A fillable PDF form that you can complete on your computer, save, and edit as needed in the future. If clicking on this link does not open the file, cut and paste the link into your browser. https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/FM_inventory.pdf
3-b. Make sure you’re not paying more than you should for insurance.
- Shop around. Consumer Reports Buying Guides for auto and homeowners insurance are accessible without an online membership. However, a login is required for to access ratings and recommendations; you may have access through your library if it subscribes.
4. Reduce your exposure to marketers and fraudsters
- Put controls in place.
- Opt out of preapproved credit card offers.
- 1-888-5-OPT-OUT (1-888-567-8688)
- Freeze or place fraud alerts on credit reports. Freezes must be set up with each credit bureau. For a fraud alert, you need only notify one of them.
- Opt out of preapproved credit card offers.
- Things to do when a loved one has passed
- Shortcut link to the exact section of the page on a USA.gov website: http://bit.ly/AfterSomeoneDies
5. Watch for indications of ID theft or financial abuse – yourself or with the help of others.
6. Plan for future housing and care needs.
- Reverse mortgage
- You’ll find a list of informative guides and research -based information at https://karenchanfinancialed.com/resources/reverse-mortgages/
- A reverse mortgage won’t let you borrow the full value of your home. For an estimate of how much you might get, use the calculator at https://www.reversemortgage.org/About/ReverseMortgageCalculator.aspx
- Long term care insurance.
- Compare policies using the tool from University of Illinois Extension: http://www.longtermcare.illinois.edu/documents/LTC_policy_comparison.pdf
- Medicaid: Familiarize yourself with how Medicaid works in Illinois. Rules for eligibility include income and asset limits, and protections against impoverishing the healthy, “community spouse.”
- http://www.longtermcare.illinois.edu/ will help you evaluate all of your choices, not just insurance.
7. Make a spending plan for now – and 2nd one for “what if”
- Create your own form, use an Excel template, or look for one online. The US Dept. of Labor has an interactive one from their Savings Fitness book at https://www.askebsa.dol.gov/SavingsFitness/Worksheets.
8. Estimate how long your savings and investments will last.
- Calculate the value of your savings and investments, including retirement accounts.
- You can use a Net Worth form, but ignore value of home, personal property, and Cash assets such as your checking account.)
- Estimate how much you can spend from your investments and retirement accounts, and how long will my money last??
- Use an online calculator such as http://bit.ly/Vanguard_How_Long
9. Designate people who can act in your place when needed.
- An “authorized signer” on your checking account
- Learn how this works by reading about convenience accounts or agency accounts from the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau at http://bit.ly/AuthSigner
- Power of Attorney for Property
- Statutory Short Form illinois.gov/sites/gac/Forms/Documents/POA_Property_July2011.pdf
- Power of Attorney for Healthcare
- Personal Representative who can receive your medical information per HIPAA
10. Express your wishes about healthcare and end-of-life care.
- Living will
- Do Not Resuscitate/Practitioner Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (DNR/POLST)
- Learn more and get statutory forms at http://www.dph.illinois.gov/topics-services/health-care-regulation/nursing-homes/advance-directives
12. Learn about benefits and services for which you may be eligible – now or in the future.
- Senior Health Insurance Program (SHIP) – a free statewide health insurance counseling service for Medicare beneficiaries and their caregivers. https://www2.illinois.gov/aging/ship/ or call (800) 252-8966
THE FOLLOWING MAY HAVE INCOME OR ASSET LIMITATIONS
- Free tax preparation. VITA (income $55,000 or less or disabled) and Tax Counseling for the Elderly (all taxpayers, esp. aged 60+) are IRS-led programs. Find sites at https://irs.treasury.gov/freetaxprep/
- Many Tax Counseling for the Elderly sites are operated by AARP’s Tax Aide program. Beginning in late January, find a location at https://www.aarp.org/money/taxes/aarp_taxaide/ 1-888-AARPNOW (1-888-227-7669)
- Eldercare Locator is a service administered by the National Association of Area Agencies on Aging (n4a). It can connect you with help in your neighborhood.
- Call 1 (800) 677-1116 or search on the website using your zip code at https://eldercare.acl.gov/
- Search results typically include your Area Agency on Aging, SHIP (health insurance counseling), legal services, and long term care ombudsman.
- You will need to inquire to determine your eligibility for these individual services.
- The Illinois Dept on Aging website can also direct you to local services. You may get a more complete list of services than from Eldercare Locator.
- On the state map at https://webapps.illinois.gov/AGE/ProviderProfileSearch, click on your county for a list of service providers and services. For many services, it will instruct you to contact your AAA (Area Agency on Aging). That contact information is listed higher up on the page.
- Or call 800-256-8966
- Some services are income based, others are not, such as congregate meals.
- BenefitsCheckUp, operated by the National Council on Aging, actually screens to determine federal, state, and private benefits and services for which you are eligible, instead of just giving you a list of things for which you have to individually check eligibility criteria.
- Calling 211 in many Illinois counties will connect you with a non-profit agency providing confidential information & referral to services, such as help with health issues, housing & utilities, food, crisis, emergencies and disasters
- You may also be able to get information about prescription assistance services, transportation, adult day care, community meals, respite care, home health care, and homemaker services.
- Check Illinois 211 service areas at https://www.illinois211.org/home-2/. Cook, DuPage, Grundy, Kankakee, and Will counties do not currently have 211 service. Other areas not yet served include south-central, far western, and northwestern counties, as well as some individual counties in other parts of the state.
- Note: When the presenter call 211 in DuPage county – which doesn’t technically have a 211 provider – she was connected with the DuPage County offices.