The average American who lives to retirement age today, is living much longer than people used to live after they retired. Since the amount they saved for retirement was likely based on projections of having shorter lifespans, people are finding that they have not saved enough to meet their expenses.
To overcome that shortfall, many elderly people are turning to their children for assistance.
Unfortunately, that can create a problem for the children.
Those children with elderly parents who need assistance are now starting to enter retirement age themselves. They often did not save enough to take care of themselves and their parents.
Some of them are having to delay their own retirement as a result, as the Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog discusses in "More Retirement-Age Clients Facing, New Unexpected Expenses."
This problem can be expected to get increasingly serious, as more elderly people continue to live longer. There is no easy solution.
Longer lifespans are already expected to put deep financial strains on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid in the near future, so a government-based solution is not likely to be forthcoming soon.
If anything, the government will try to fix the finances of current programs, rather than come up with new programs.
For now, the best solution is at the individual level.
If you can afford to, you might want to save a little bit more for your own retirement than you think you will need, in case you need to help your parents.
Reference: Wills, Trusts & Estates Prof Blog (August 16, 2017) "More Retirement-Age Clients Facing, New Unexpected Expenses."