October 2020 – A recent release from the Society of Actuaries — Thinking Ahead: Informing the Design of a Roadmap for Keeping Your Money Safe as You Age, is research aimed at understanding the barriers to and facilitators of advance financial care planning.
Adults over age 65 are faced with many new challenges since the novel coronavirus became a global pandemic. Not only are they more vulnerable to the effects of the disease, they are also threatened by economic repercussions that have affected their retirement savings. At a time of so much uncertainty, planning for the future can feel like a futile exercise. But at the same time, older people are more acutely aware that illness and disability can strike at any time. Preparing for changes in financial capacity is essential for a secure retirement.
Unfortunately, the majority of Americans are underprepared for periods of diminished decision-making capacity. Diminished capacity and lack of preparedness for it can result in financial mistakes, conflict among family members, and vulnerability to financial exploitation and fraud. Today these risks are heightened as many aging people are socially isolated from their friends and relatives who would normally recognize indicators of decline. To inform how we might encourage older adults to plan for the future, the aim of this research is to understand the barriers to and facilitators of advance financial care planning.