More HH Legal Updates

Houston Harbaugh is a full service law firm headquartered in Pittsburgh and serving Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio. This collection of blogs further highlights the firms capabilities in several practice areas.

Don’t Underestimate the Risk of Needing Long-Term Care

When planning for retirement, most of us take into account our future needs related to food and shelter and our potentially increasing medical costs due to sickness or injury. However, most Americans underestimate their risk for needing long-term care.

Long-term care becomes an issue when an individual needs supervision to ensure his or her safety or needs personal care assistance; i.e., help with activities of daily living, such as eating, bathing, dressing, using the bathroom and moving around. The need for long-term care can arise suddenly or come about gradually. Medicare and private health insurance do not cover long-term care.

Considering current demographics, long-term care is a growing social concern. In response to this reality, the Long-Term Care Financing Collaborative (the “Collaborative”) was formed in 2012 by a diverse group of national experts with a mission to improve how Americans deal with long-term care.

According to the Collaborative, there are between 10 and 12 million adults who currently need long-term care, and the number of adults needing long-term care is expected to double by the year 2030. While there is great variation among seniors in both the level of care required and the period of time that care is needed, approximately 50% of all seniors will need a high level of long-term care for two years.

Long-term care can be delivered in the community, in the home, at an assisted living facility, or in a nursing home. The median monthly costs for the nation and Pennsylvania follow:

Adult Day Care$1,517$1,343
Home Health Aide Services$4,099$4,195
Assisted Living: (one bedroom)$3,750$3,450
Nursing Home (semi-private room)$7,148$9,277
Nursing Home (private room)$8,121$10,007

Few people have sufficient savings to cover the costs of long-term care. Rather, many must rely on unpaid family caregivers, or are forced to turn to Medicaid provided they are eligible for benefits, if they do not have adequate private long-term care insurance.

Long-term care insurance policies pay for personal care services up to a set limit once the insured shows that he or she meets the policy’s eligibility criteria for payments. Policies vary in how and where benefits can be used.

There are also different types of long-term care insurance policies to consider. For example, there are traditional standalone policies where the premiums payments are “lost” if long-term care is not needed. Alternatively, there are policies that include a return of premium feature at some level. This feature, payable as a death benefit to the policyholder’s beneficiary, adds to the cost of the policy. Lastly, there are hybrid policies that combine long-term care insurance and life insurance. These combination policies are suitable for individuals who have a need for life insurance and also want long-term care protection.

If you are concerned about long-term care and need assistance, please think of us. With proper preparation, you can avoid the financial and emotional stress that comes with crisis planning and lessen possible burdens on your family. We can help with determining your eligibility for benefits, creating or reviewing caregiver arrangements, or understanding available options related to asset titling and transfers, including the use of trusts, for the purpose of preserving funds.

About Us

Trusted and Cost-Effective Business Law, Business Litigation and Estate Planning Attorneys and Counselors; Building Client Confidence™ with Businesses and Individuals Since 1975

Our firm offers individualized solutions and the highest quality, client-driven and cost effective legal services. Houston Harbaugh, P.C., is a well-known law firm in Pittsburgh, serving Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio. Our diverse practice areas include Business Law, Business Litigation, Estate and Succession Planning, Intellectual Property Litigation and Prosecution, Employment and Labor, Employee Benefits, Oil and Gas, Landowner and Property Dispute Counseling and Litigation, Health Care, Environmental, Real Estate, Construction, Complex Tort and Catastrophic Injury Litigation, Insurance coverage and Bad Faith Law, Mediation, Arbitration and Special Master appointment work. As one of the 20 largest law firms in Pittsburgh, our lawyers serve clients on a regional and national basis.

We regularly represent regional, national and international insurance carriers in defense, insurance coverage, unfair trade practices and bad faith matters, and we issue opinions letters and coverage analyses for insurers. We defend designers, manufacturers and sellers in pharmaceutical, products and medical products liability matters and we litigate and try cases involving catastrophic injuries, industrial accidents, toxic torts, professional, engineering and architectural negligence, and agent and broker claims and lawsuits.

Why Houston Harbaugh, P.C.? The Answer Is Clear.

We are accomplished litigators with a strong track record of success in the courtroom and in jury trials. We design and manage business transactions, succession planning, banking and regulatory issues. Our firm has regularly been featured in the U.S. News “Best Lawyers”® rankings of Pittsburgh’s “Best Law Firms.” Our attorneys are also regularly nominated as “Best Lawyers” in this publication. In addition, many of our attorneys are consistently recognized in the annual national Super Lawyers peer review rankings, and our corporate practice has been selected as the winner of The Legal Intelligencer’s Best Law Firm Corporate Practices contest for the Midsize Firm category. Our property and landowner counseling and litigation practice in Oil and Gas and Real Estate is ranked at the top on a regional basis. We help clients to apply for, prosecute, audit, manage and protect intellectual property rights in patent, trademark, copyright and trade secrets. We are admitted to the USPTO and have experience in the TTAB. Some of our firm’s shareholders are Adjunct Professors of Law at the Duquesne University School of Law in litigation and intellectual property courses.

Helping You Achieve Your Goals For Over 40 Years

Since our inception as a health care practice in 1975, our attorneys have represented clients in state and federal courts in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and throughout the nation. We have grown into a multi-disciplinary practice with the ability to handle complex business transactional and litigation matters. We counsel on estate and succession planning and on trust and guardianship matters. We have a strong employment and labor practice. We represent clients in trade secret counseling and federal Defend Trade Secret Act (DTSA) counseling and litigation. Our DTSALaw® practice group is well versed in this federal body of trade secret law. We counsel, draft, litigate and defend claims involving employment non-compete, restrictive covenants, non-disclosure agreements and breach of contract matters. We service clients in the collection of debts and in bankruptcy creditor matters. Houston Harbaugh litigates in Orphans and Probate courts for matters involving estates and trusts. We also provide mediation and arbitration services to parties involved in litigation and our lawyers are currently serving as court appointed special masters in the Federal Courts.

Contact us and Learn How We Can Help You and Your Business

For more information on how we can help you, call our Pittsburgh office at 412-281-5060. You can also reach us online.

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