Long-Term Care Insurance
Long-Term Care Insurance Information
Long Term Care
Because of old age, mental or physical illness, or injury, some people find themselves in need of help with eating, bathing, dressing, toileting or continence, and/or transferring (e.g., getting out of a chair or out of bed). These six actions are called Activities of Daily
Living–sometimes referred to as ADLs. In general, if you can’t do two or more of these activities, or if you have a cognitive impairment, you are said to need “long-term care.”
Long-term care isn’t a very helpful name for this type of situation because, for one thing, it might not last for a long time. Some people who need ADL services might need them only for a few months or less.
Many people think that long-term care is provided exclusively in a nursing home. It can be, but it can also be provided in an adult day care center, an assisted living facility, or at home.
Assistance with ADLs, called “custodial care,” may be provided in the same place as (and therefore is sometimes confused with) “skilled care.” Skilled care means medical, nursing, or rehabilitative services, including help taking medicine, undergoing testing (e.g. blood pressure), or other similar services. This distinction is important because generally Medicare and most private health insurance pays only for skilled care–not custodial care.
Hybrid LTC Products
We’re finding some people prefer some of the advantages of going the “hybrid” route for their long-term care coverage. I work with highly experienced professionals who understand the “Hybrid” market inside and out.
Our hybrid clients typically:
- Want a guarantee there will be NO rate increases to their premium, ever.
- Are very comfortable financially and are tempted to even just self-insure the risk, but realize having insurance in place may be prudent.
- Are people who have $100-150K in an easy-access fund like money market, CD, etc. – as “rainy day” money.
- Like to know they are going to use this insurance. With Hybrid, there’s a death benefit (life insurance) or the option to use the death benefit for long-term care costs instead. Hybrids work very similarly to “stand-alone” LTC products at claim time.
- May have income tax sensitivity. Benefits are income tax free.
- May have more serious health issues preventing the stand-alone companies from issuing them a policy. (We can often find a hybrid company may accept some health histories that are not acceptable by stand-alone companies.)
Other advantages of some Hybrid LTC products:
- One of our carriers still offers UNLIMITED lifetime coverage for LTC
- Though monies are re-allocated, it remains YOUR money under your control. So the money will be used either for long-term care costs, or for a death benefit (life insurance) or you can pull out your money later.