Published Article Details

Here's how you can help plan your parents' finances

Posted by: Arti Bhargva on Jun 15, 2020, 06.30 AM IST

Alok’s elderly parents are retired and live on their own. Though Alok continues to support them financially, he is worried about their well-being in the current scenario, especially with robberies and social unrest on the rise. His parents argue that keeping sufficient money at home is necessary to deal with emergencies and it also reduces the number of visits to the bank. Alok is not convinced and is looking for a solution that will give his parents the comfort of having funds as and when needed but at the same time does not require them to hold so much cash at home. How can he make life safer and easier for his parents?

At their age, Alok’s parents’ biggest fear would be of a medical emergency, which is a real concern in the current crisis. Alok should consider enrolling his parents in a cashless health insurance plan which would cover emergency and non-emergency medical expenses. He should add them to his health policy if procuring an independent policy is difficult. He will need to explain the process of using the facilities under the policy so that his parents have the confidence of managing their needs without holding a large amount of cash.

An e-wallet, credit or debit card is another option that can eliminate the need for cash in their regular transactions. Most shops, including medical and grocery outlets, accept cards as a mode of payment. Alok should select a card that has wide acceptance and arrange for the online settlement of their monthly card bills. He can ask his bank to issue an add-on card to them, since banks may be reluctant to issue credit cards to very senior citizens.

Many banks in the current scenario would be willing to provide special facilities for senior citizens. These facilities include cash delivery at doorstep either free of cost or at a nominal fee. This facility can be used by Alok’s parents to periodically replenish the amount of cash they need for their regular use.

These are the ways in which Alok can make it redundant for his parents to hold a large amount of cash. It will allow the elderly people lead their independent life without worrying for their safety.

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