Administering Estates

Top 3 things to consider before moving into a residential aged care facility

residential aged careYou may have made the decision to move into a residential aged care facility.

There are a number of things to consider before signing the agreement and moving in. Here are the top three things we would advise our clients to consider before taking this important step!

  1. Make sure you are happy with the location, the staff, your potential neighbours, and the day-to-day operations.

    Ask questions, do your due diligence and find out what you are getting yourself into.

  2. Have you considered how this will be financed?

If you currently own your home, you may decide to sell your home and use the sale proceeds to pay the refundable accommodation deposit (RAD). The RAD is your initial cost to enter the Aged Care Facility. Your RAD, less any contracted expenses, will usually be paid to your estate when you pass away.

It is important to note that, if family members assist in contributing to the RAD payment, the refund will be issued to your estate and not to those family members. If you require a repayment to those who assisted you, this should be addressed in your Will or a loan agreement, ideally before or when you move in. Failure to do so may result in those family members not being reimbursed for their contribution.

If you cannot sell your home, have no property to sell and no family members can assist, you may seek assistance from Centrelink. It is best to contact them direct for more information and to discuss your specific circumstances.

  1. You also need to consider ongoing payments.

Residential aged care facilities always require some sort of regular payments or additional fees for your ongoing care, such as:

  • Daily accommodation payments;
  • Basic daily fees;
  • Service fees; and/or
  • Means-tested care fees.

Each facility is different, so you should ask them directly the full details of fees you will be required to pay, and make sure you have the means, or have sought advice about how you will cover these.

It is a good idea to talk to a lawyer, accountant and specialist financial advisor to review your assets and options for the future before making any decisions, so that you understand the impact the decisions will have on your finances and on your estate.

Any questions?

If you have any questions about moving into residential aged care, please contact Caitlin on (08) 8531 4109 or TGB has experienced lawyers that can help you with any of your estate planning needs, or assist you to understand any aged care contracts and agreements before you enter into them!