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When you are young and in good health, the need for long term care seems far, far away – something not to be bothered about. However, not thinking about it is not going to negate your chances of needing long term care. According to estimates, people over 65 have a 70% chance of needing some form of long term care.
A long term care insurance policy is probably the best way to fortify yourself against long term care costs.
The assistance required to carry out activities like eating, bathing, using the toilet etc, is termed as long term care. A person may not be able to perform these activities of daily living as a result of chronic medical conditions, serious injury, aging or cognitive impairment. It can be given at home or at a special facility. Long term care aims at making the patient’s life more comfortable and convenient – not curing the ailment.
This type of insurance covers the costs incurred for getting long term care at home, nursing home, adult day care facility and the like. There are many companies selling long term care insurance policies but the rates and coverage varies. So you need to compare the policies and go through the long term care reviews before buying any policy. The long term care insurance premiums are tax-deductible if you qualify based on your age. In 2017, the IRS has increased these limits.
Yes, it is an added expense, an extra insurance policy but maybe worth it.
Long term care insurance premiums are not low but the recent astronomical increase has left people reeling under the effect. The increase has been as high as 60% - 80% pushing up premiums significantly. Existing customers have had to choose lower benefits in order to keep premiums affordable.
Due to high number of claims and unforeseen factors, long term care insurance has not been profitable for some companies forcing them to leave the market. John Hancock has stopped selling new policies. Genworth has also suspended sales of such policies in some states. However some companies are trying new products and benefits to attract customers.
If the long term care insurance premiums are not more than 7% of your income and you think you can manage the rise of rates, you should consider buying this policy. However if you qualify for Medicaid or you are wealthy enough to pay for long term costs on your own you need not buy such a policy.