Long Term Care Insurance choices giving you a headache?

Is the thought of purchasing long-term care insurance for your elders giving you a headache? Well, here’s a little pain relief.

As we discussed in last week’s blog, long-term care – care for your elders when they cannot perform two or more activities of daily living {ADLs} or have cognitive impairments that hinder their safety – is the financial responsibility of your elder. Medicare does not pay for long-term care.

Your elder can purchase long-term care (LTC) insurance that will pay them a benefit when they need this advanced level of care. The insurance benefit will supplement their own financial resources to pay for expensive LTC costs.

In evaluating LTC insurance policies, it is important to consider the following:

  • Where will your parent want or need to receive care – at home, at an assisted living facility, at a nursing care facility? Try to buy a policy that covers all three at the same level of benefit.
  • How long do you think your elder will need care? LTC policies generally start with a 2 year coverage period and go out for many years. Each year of additional coverage increases the cost of the policy.
  • What are the costs of care in the area where your parents plan to live? Do research on the Internet and with local facilities to determine current costs.
  • Consider inflation protection to keep the benefit current with the rate of inflation of care costs.
  • The elimination period is the number of days that your parent will pay out of pocket for care before their benefit starts to pay. Get the shortest elimination period your parent can afford.
  • Is the insurance company that you are considering a stable one? How are they rated? Are they financially sound? You will be counting on them to pay a benefit in the future and you will want them to be solid financially.
  • There are many riders that can help ease the burden of LTC costs. Ask your insurance agent about what waivers, riders and clauses are available.

If your elders do not yet need care, don’t let this opportunity to purchase LTC insurance go by without a thorough evaluation. This is a great investment and one I hope you will consider seriously!!  It will save you a GIANT headache later on.

Shortly, I will have a podcast available that will provide detailed suggestions and checklists for the evaluation and purchase of LTC insurance. Once completed, it will be available for purchase on my website store. Look for it soon!

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