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Taking Care of Caregivers

November 2018 
by Michael Lynch

It’s a full-time job that they may be doing on top of their regular 9-to-5.

For the 34 million Americans who provide care for someone age 50 or older1, the 7 day a week, 24 hour a day responsibility can be exhausting. They may be taking care of a spouse and/or one or more parents, sometimes while raising their own children. It’s a full-time job that they may be doing on top of their regular 9-to-5.

Being a caregiver is a physically, financially, and mentally challenging role. It can include being a chauffeur, a chef, a nurse, a housekeeper, and so much more.

November 13 is National Caregiver Appreciation Day, which is a good time for financial advisors to think about how to make their caregiver-clients’ lives easier. There are a few ways that financial advisors can help their clients who are already caregivers, or are primed to take the role in the future.

1. Listen
Talk to your clients about their role as a caregiver. Find out who they support, what the role consists of, and what their financial concerns are. For those who are not caregivers but plan to be in the future, determine what their expectations are. Pay attention to what they are saying, and even what they aren’t saying. This is not only an opportunity to gather the information you need to create a better financial plan, but also to show you are someone they can trust with their concerns.

2. Plan
Based on what they have said, work on a financial plan that takes the cost of caregiving into consideration. Do you need to make any changes to their investments to keep them on track? Or do they need help budgeting to make sure they aren’t spreading their income too thin? It’s important to stay on top of the finances early, since caregiving gets more complex, and therefore more expensive, over time.

3. Connect
Lastly, your clients may simply need help as a caregiver. Many may feel as though they don’t have an instruction manual, and are just acting off the cuff most of the time. Provide them with resources that can make their lives easier and bring peace of mind. For example, there are local Area Agencies on Aging which can provide a number of services based on what your client may need, such as respite care, caregiver education classes, support groups, or even emergency assistance.

This Caregiver Appreciation Day, show your clients that you have more than their financial best interest at heart by going above and beyond and help your clients with what really matters to them.

Michael Lynch
Vice President, Strategic Markets

Michael Lynch is Vice President of Strategic Markets for Hartford Funds. In his current role, Mike is responsible for engaging and educating both financial advisors and their clients about current and emerging opportunities in the financial-services marketplace. These opportunities range from tactical strategies in areas such as retirement-income planning, investment planning, and charitable planning, to anticipating and preparing for long-term demographic and lifestyle changes.

Mike joined the organization in 1993 as an annuity client service specialist. In 1997, he joined the Advanced Product Marketing department, where he developed an extensive knowledge of estate and retirement planning. In 2004, Mike became a regional sales director. In 2006, he became Vice President and national director of The Hartford’s Retirement and Wealth Consulting Group, which provided thought leadership and financial education focused on retirement and small-business planning. In 2012, he joined The Hartford Mutual Funds.

Mike earned his bachelor’s degree in business administration from Eastern Connecticut State University. Mike is a registered representative of Hartford Funds Distributors. He is FINRA Series 6, 63, and 26 registered and holds a life, health and variable insurance license. He currently lives in Charlotte, North Carolina, with his wife, Kim, and their children, Josh, and Em.

Check the background of this firm/individual on FINRA's BrokerCheck.

1AARP & National Alliance for Caregiving. (2015). Caregivers of older adults: A focused look at those caring for someone age 50+. Most recent data available.

Michael Lynch is a registered representative of Hartford Funds Distributors, LLC.

Check the background of this firm/individual on FINRA's BrokerCheck.