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Who Needs Retirement When You Can Raise Your Grandchildren Instead?


People say that a positive attitude makes all the difference, but they have never walked in your shoes.  Estate planning websites show senior couples walking on the beach at sunset, but you have not had any leisure time in years; your idea of self-care is watching an entire YouTube Shorts video about an economical dinner recipe while you brush your teeth in the morning.  You are old enough to draw Social Security, but you stay in the workforce, not because you have any desire for material things, but because your grandchildren depend on you financially.  When you see news articles about spending four percent of your retirement savings per year and taking a Caribbean cruise every winter, you feel the way New Yorkers felt when they watched Friends and saw sporadically employed adultolescents living in spacious apartments.  Reality is not how it looks in advertisements.  Your multigenerational household is not a decision you made after backpacking through Southeast Asia and deciding that life is simpler and happier when grandparents and grandchildren live together; it is a matter of economic necessity.  To find out more about providing as much stability as you can for your grandchildren with your limited means, contact a Dade City estate planning lawyer.

Your Grandparenting Responsibilities Keep You Young, but Your Bills Keep Piling Up

More than two million grandparents are the primary caregivers for their grandchildren.  The number of grandparents who are in the primary caregiving role has declined slightly over the past decade, but the average age of the grandparents engaged in full-time child care has increased.  Again, estate planning brochures idealize grandparenting; they make it look like it is all cuddles and baking cookies and fishing trips.  The reality is different when you have to do the duty of both a parent and a grandparent for the same child.  Furthermore, grandparents and grandchildren are only alone together because the middle generation has faced serious adversity, such as illness, death, imprisonment or drug addiction, so the generations on both sides are coping with grief.

This is your reality, and you must make some practical decisions.  Whether you foster your grandchildren or legally adopt them, the law recognizes your financial responsibility for them, and you can claim them as dependents on your tax returns.  Most grandparents who are primarily responsible for their grandchildren stay in the workforce longer, but you may decide to retire earlier if the children are young and it makes more sense to draw Social Security than to work and pay for daycare.  Many of the minors in their grandparents’ care have medical special needs.  If you own your home and have a grandchild with special needs, it is a good idea to place it in a special needs trust.  This way, your grandchild can inherit it from you and live in it without losing eligibility for government benefits.

Contact a Florida Elder Law Attorney About Estate Planning for Grandparents Who Do It All

An estate planning attorney can help you make decisions in the best interests of your grandchildren.  Contact The Law Office of Laurie R. Chane in Dade City, Florida to discuss your estate plan.



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