Children caring for parents lose $300,000

June 15, 2011 at 12:56 AM
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WESTPORT, Conn., June 15 (UPI) -- The 10 million U.S. adult children now caring for aging parents will lose about $3 trillion in wages, pension and Social Security benefits, a survey indicates.

The study by MetLife Mature Market Institute, the National Alliance for Caregiving and the Center for Long Term Care Research and Policy at New York Medical College, found that individually, average losses for women totaled $324,044 and $283,716 for men.

The researchers analyzed data from the National Health and Retirement Study to determine the extent to which older adult children provide parental care.

"Nearly 10 million adult children over the age of 50 care for aging parents," Sandra Timmermann, director of the MetLife Mature Market Institute, says in a statement. "It can jeopardize their future financial security."

The study also finds:

-- Caregivers who also work are more likely to report that their health is fair or poor, compared with children who do not provide care.

-- The percentage of adult children providing personal care and/or financial assistance to a parent has more than tripled over the past 15 years.

-- 28 percent of women provide help with dressing, feeding and bathing, compared with 17 percent of men.

-- For women, the individual amount of lost wages due to leaving the labor force early because of care-giving responsibilities equals $142,693, lost Social Security benefits is $131,351 and about $50,000 in pensions is lost.

-- For men, the individual amount of lost wages is $89,107, lost Social Security benefits is $144,609 and lost pensions is $50,000.

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