Fair Deal Scheme

The Fair Deal Scheme was enacted in 2009 to assist those who cannot afford to pay full cost of nursing home care. The Fair Deal Scheme mainly applies to those in need of long term nursing home care, but cannot afford it. The main purpose of the scheme is to ensure that no one needs to sell their family home to pay for cost of care.

Nursing home care costs are managed under the Health Service Executive (HSE).  The costs can be paid in full or partially. Those charged with paying the resident’s portion of the cost are allowed to defer the charge. Under the Fair Deal Scheme, every person contributions to the cost of care is based on their means and the state will then pay the balance.

A financial assessment is needed to define the level of contribution an individual makes towards the cost of future care. Income and assets of each individual are assessed. Ultimately if you have little income and assets you pay less than those who have more income and assets.

Financial assessment requires …

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Pension top-ups failing seniors, women

The most recent governmental review of pension top-ups has left many retired people with far less than they had anticipated. Only 15% of around 11,500 cases reviewed within the last period will be receiving top-ups, leaving 10,000 people who applied for a top-up without any other option than to survive off of their same plan, despite rising prices.

This denial of pension top-ups extends beyond this small percentage of retirees. Tens of thousands of people were affected by this bad review, causing the public to go into a frenzy. Understandably so, given that everyone who has a pension is retired and between the ages of 60 and 70. Most of these people have already worked for over 40 years and have planned and saved so that they no longer have to work in the elderly stage of their lives.

Usually, people begin saving for pensions at the age of 25, paying small amounts to their retirement fund that are sometimes matched to a degree by either their current employer or the government. These plans also usually have higher …

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PRA warns against 35 year mortgages in England

Traditionally, banks have offered mortgage terms of 25 years to buyers, a long enough time so that buyers can have both low monthly payments and a moderate level of total interest paid. In recent years however, there has been a trend towards mortgage loans of even longer terms, those 35 years or longer in the UK mortgage market. By extending the duration of loans, banks have reduced the amount borrowers pay as monthly instalments, thus making housing appear more affordable in the short run. Despite its apparent benefits however, the Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) of the Bank of England has issued warnings about these loans and their risks and consequences.

 

Earlier this week, in a speech intended to be delivered in May but pushed back due to the election, head of the PRA, Sam Woods warned lenders about offering long term mortgages. With mortgages of over 35 years, there is an increase likelihood that the later instalments would have to be paid with post retirement income. Woods and the agency believes that this dramatically increases the risk of these …

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Newstalk: Karl Deeter on the Pat Kenny show discussing pensions

The Pat Kenny Show on Newstalk had us on to talk about the future of pensions and to help people understand some of the looming issues in the retirement space.

It is a complex problem which is affected by everything from home-ownership to central bank interest rates. The main thing to take from it is that everybody who can start a pension, no matter how small, should do so. One of the biggest issues is the fact that people don’t even have one they can contribute to.

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Pensions: Public versus Private – nobody wins

This article appeared in the Sun on Sunday on the 2nd of June 2013

Sometimes we hear how people in the public sector make more than the private sector, or that big private sector earners don’t pay enough tax. This is a simple divide and conquer strategy where the end game is to make us all less well off in order for the Government to hold on to more resources and then pay for things in a demonstration of their own largesse.

In every version of this script the State is the hero and the public and private sector take it in turns to be the greedy bad guys.

Much of welfare funding, including many aspects of pensions, isn’t just about figuring out the strategy for preventing poverty in the first place, or curing it long term, or about reducing poverty in the elderly. It’s about feeding the ego’s of policy makers while using other peoples money. And by demonstrating how they, as a third party, can make the world a better place because they are the anointed ones who …

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