Long Term Care Insurance

Why Should I Buy It?

If you are single and a need for long term care arises, insurance can pay for and coordinate that care. If you are married and you have a need for long term care, your spouse may be forced to pay for an outside caregiver.

With insurance you won’t have to feel you would be a burden for family or friends and your spouse will not be forced to “tough it out” in order to be left with adequate assets for future needs.

Helping You Keep Your Independence

Long Term Care Insurance will help you keep your independence and dignity. Here’s how. . . some of you will spend all your assets on care while others plan to give their money away or put it in trust. With no assets you will now qualify for a welfare program called Medicaid.

Assisted Living may be a preferred alternative to a nursing home but Medicaid may insist on a nursing home… insurance affords you a choice.

Medicaid typically pays for a semiprivate room in a nursing home, and; not all nursing homes take Medicaid patients. In many states it’s not easy to get Medicaid to cover home care or pay for assisted living. Many people want to stay at home, but with Medicaid may not be able to. And assisted living is rapidly becoming a preferred alternative to nursing home care for certain disabilities but Medicaid may insist on a nursing home instead.

Insurance allows the healthy caregiver to buy much-needed respite from paid professionals, while at the same time, retaining the assets and possibly avoiding an early death from the mental and physical stress of care giving.

If your children or extended family promise to take care of you if the time comes that you need care, insurance will help them do that. Probably neither you nor your children have thought of the prospects of moving you from place to place, handling incontinence, cleaning up after “accidents” in the bathroom or helping you with bathing and dressing. Insurance will pay for aides to help with these tasks.

How to Buy Long Term Care Insurance?

There are hundreds of long term care insurance companies selling hundreds of different types of policies. It can become very confusing. Here is a checklist of some of the things you need to know before you purchase a policy.

  • Is the insurance representative an expert in long-term care insurance?
  • Does the representative own a long-term care insurance policy?
  • Is the policy you like tax qualified and if not, do you understand the ramifications?
  • Does it allow “standby assistance”?
  • Is it a “pool of money” as opposed to a “stated period”?
  • Do you understand how the elimination period works?
  • Does it have an absence of prohibitive cost containment provisions?
  • Is there an absence of “capping” of automatic benefit increase riders?
  • Do you understand how the waiver of premium works?
  • Does the assisted living facility benefit pay the same as for nursing home?
  • Are you buying adequate home care coverage?
  • Does the policy pay for homemaker services?
  • Are the requirements for providers of home care reasonable?

The more “yes” answers the better.


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