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Women are so busy raising kids, taking care of their elderly parents, and maintaining a household and career that they often do not focus on what will happen to them in retirement and beyond. A new white paper by the Volunteers of America called “Boomer Bust 2011: Still Unprepared and Unaware” highlights how unprepared seniors and their caregivers are as they age.

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Entering a nursing home can provide highly sought-after services and around-the-clock care. Family members and loved ones can have the expertise of skilled staff that provides peace of mind for your elderly parent. But if proper planning for the monies involved in nursing home care and estate planning are not done in advance, it can put your loved one at risk financially.

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Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) are great tools to save money for retirement and are also a critical part of an individual’s estate plan. As each person and family has a different objective as they reach the golden years, it is a wise step to speak to an experienced estate planning lawyer to make sure it is set up properly and achieves the goals you want in the event of your death. IRAs can be complex, and without proper planning, you and your beneficiaries could face hefty taxes on the monies.

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Long-term care costs can add up quickly. The expenses to the individual and their loved ones can be exorbitant and compromise other financial plans. Two recent U.S. Tax Court decisions are critical for people dealing with chronic medical conditions. These rulings give direction on what needs to be done to write off health care costs on annual taxes.

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Aging without Children

The demographics of aging are shifting, and the number of single, childless seniors is growing.  Baby boomers, now entering retirement, are much more likely to be childless than previous generations. Some estimates run higher than 25 percent. In addition, more couples have opted to live together outside marriage. Add to that the fact that women tend to outlive men, and it’s obvious that an increasing number of seniors will be on their own.

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On February 1, 2011, a Manhattan Federal Court Judge rendered a decision in D.A. v. New York City Dept. of Education, 09 Civ. 5097 (S.D.N.Y. Feb 1, 2011) that reaffirmed a family’s right to seek and obtain “direct” tuition funding for a private school education where the family proves that the local school district failed to provide a free and appropriate public school education (FAPE) to the student.

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