3 Things You Should Know About Long-Term Care Planning

May 18, 2016

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Having Long-Term Care Insurance is one of the most important ways you can protect yourself and your family heading into retirement. Only 8% of the U.S. population currently have any long-term care insurance coverage. Yet almost 70% of people over age 65 will end up in long-term care at some point in their retirement years. If you have savings and people you care about… you may want to look into long-term care planning. Long-term care insurance not only protects you and your savings, it also protects the people you care about from the financial, physical and emotional consequences that come when a loved one is in need of care.
c5a83c_cec458234c78400ba6cb4f47829d7ebf-mv1You may have heard it said; “long-term care planning is so confusing”, or “long-term care insurance is too expensive”…but it doesn’t have to be.

Well, here are a few things you should know:

  1. Purchasing Long-Term Care Insurance (LTCi) is not as simple as buying insurance for your home or car. You can change your car and homeowners insurance and it usually only gets you a better rate. That is not the case with Long-Term Care Insurance.
    Long-Term Care Insurance is more of a permanent decision, in that what you buy today, you want to make sure is a good option for you many years down the road. This is important because unlike homeowners and car insurance, you have to qualify for long-term care insurance base on your health and your age. Meaning down the road, you may not qualify for long-term care insurance due to a change in your health or you may be more limited on your choices based on your age. You want to make sure the plan you put in place today offers meaningful coverage for you in the future.
    Solution: Work with a CLTC Specialist, a Certified Long-Term Care Planning Specialist.
  2. Long-Term Care Planning has changed, many people still think long-term care insurance is too expensive or isn’t worth it. That is just not the case anymore. The government has made changes on the state and federal level to make it more advantageous than ever. Many plans now offer additional protection including the State Partnership programs that allow you to protect assets from Medicaid Spend-down rules. This benefit ads and extra layer of protections and does not add any cost to the plans.
    There are also new plans that allow you to leverage your money into an unlimited amount of long-term care coverage without risking a dime! Meaning you can have a plan that will pay you an unlimited long-term care benefit and pay you back if you cancel or never use your plan for long term care.
    Consumers have never had more options for long-term care planning than they have today. Guaranteed level premiums, plans that pay you back, plans that can be funded in tax-advantaged ways using retirement accounts, savings, home equity or even existing life insurance policies and annuities. It’s worth taking a look at the many options available today.
  3. “It won’t happen to me” That is probably the biggest reason people don’t look into long-term care planning, deep down they think it won’t happen to them. Well, we hope it doesn’t happen to you. Maybe you’re one of the lucky ones that just pass away peacefully in their sleep without going through a long-term care situation. However, the whole point of getting insurance is so that just in case something happens, you’ve mitigated the risk to you and your family and transferred it to the insurance company. With the new plans available, you can set up a plan that pays you back if you never use it, yet will protect everything you’ve worked hard for and the people you care about most if you do need it. And remember, nearly 3 in 4 adults will end up in a long-term care situation which requires help from others.

So let’s summarize:

You want to work with a Specialist who can show you all the options and truly design a plan that fits best for your situation, not just today but many years down the road. Long-term care planning has changed and there are newer and better options now that make it easier than ever to put a plan in place. And remember, long-term care insures not only protects you, but it also protects the people you care about most.

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