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THE JOURNEY OF CAREGIVING

Navigating life’s toughest
and most rewarding job

What kind of care do caregivers provide?

98%

92%

92%

84%

64%

Emotional & Social Support1

Financial Caregiving1

Household Support1

Medical Care1

Physical Care1

49% of those providing financial caregiving (paying the bills on behalf of loved ones, handling insurance claims, filing taxes) don't have the legal authorization to do so.2

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"Make sure to review and update relevant legal documents, including a will, an advance medical directive, a durable power of attorney (which designates someone to make legal and financial decisions) and a health-care proxy (transferring legal authority for medical decisions)."

Cynthia Hutchins, director of Financial Gerontology for Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

What are the financial costs of caregiving?

30%

Cut back on expenses3

24%

Had trouble
paying bills1

21%

Dipped into savings3

18%

Couldn't contribute
to other expenses
or savings1

15%

Took on debt
to cover costs
of care3

66% of caregivers said they'd benefit from financial advice

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"Try to avoid finding yourself in a position where you have to quit your job or reduce your hours at work. That could leave you paying for your own health insurance, and you might lose other benefits as well, including money from your retirement plans."

Cynthia Hutchins, director of Financial Gerontology for Merrill Lynch Wealth Management

What are some of the biggest challenges?

18%

Negative impact on career3

36%

Financial costs of caregiving3

68%

Mental and physical time & effort involved3

$7,000: The average amount caregivers spend on caregiving per year, which goes toward paying for personal, medical and household needs1,4

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"It's not a good idea to tap your retirement funds to cover caregiving expenses. If you shortchange your financial future, you could inadvertently become a financial burden to your own family."

James D. Gothers, a national insurance specialist executive at Bank of America Merrill Lynch

How do caregivers benefit from caregiving?

65%

say caregiving has brought meaning and purpose to their life1

77%

say they would "gladly" take on being a caregiver again1

91%

are grateful to provide care1

71%

say their financial contributions cause them stress1

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DID YOU KNOW?

In the next decade, the demand for home health aides may exceed supply by more than 3 million3. Learn about the growing caregiver crisis in America.

Merrill Lynch has the insights and expertise to help you prepare for the realities of caregiving.

Get the full report Find a financial advisor Want to explore more? Back to top

1) Source: Age Wave/Merrill Lynch, 2017, "The Journey of Caregiving: Honor, Responsibility and Financial Complexity"

2) Source: AARP, 2015, "Family Financial Caregiving: Rewards, Stresses, and Responsibilities"

3) Source: Osterman, P. 2017. Who Will Care for Us? Long-Term Care and the Long-Term Workforce. Thousand Oaks: Russell Sage Foundation

4) AARP/NAC, Caregiving in the U.S., 2015

This material should be regarded as general information on Healthcare considerations and is not intended to provide specific healthcare advice. If you have questions regarding your particular situation, please contact your legal or tax advisor.

Age Wave is the nation's foremost thought leader on population aging and its profound business, social, financial, healthcare, workforce, and cultural implications. Under the leadership of Founder/CEO Dr. Ken Dychtwald, Age Wave has developed a unique understanding of new generations of maturing consumers and workers and their expectations, attitudes, hopes, and fears regarding their longer lives. Since its inception in 1986, the firm has provided breakthrough research, compelling presentations, award winning communications, education and training systems, and results-driven marketing and consulting initiatives to over half the Fortune 500. Age Wave is not affiliated with Bank of America Corporation.

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