Hidden Truths About Long Term Care Insurance

Should you or shouldn't you? It seems as if someone is always promoting the purchase of long term care insurance.

Most of us don't want to think about getting old and needing anything like that. If we do think about it, it's something we want to defer until later. Though it is offered at much younger ages (yes, young people populate nursing homes too, primarily due to trauma/accidents) with many carriers, baby boomers are the real targets. Do we need it?  Is it worth the cost?  I, too,  am a consumer. I have seen carriers and products come and go. What to do with aging loved ones is a universal challenge, cutting across all lines.  After over two decades in the senior market, assisting, advising and protecting them, the rewarding experience has been invaluable. After all this hands on experience, discussions with brokers, cost & benefits comparisons, reading endless literature and rewarding interaction with Jesse Slome, founder of the AALTCI (American Association for Long Term Care Insurance), I am providing my opinions here.....Generally, unless you have a very large amount in liquid assets squirreled away and you don't mind spending a significant chunk of it on long term care for yourself, spouse, partner, or disabled other loved one, long term care insurance is a good thing. I say that only because we just don't have any other reliable resource to pay for help at home, assisted living or nursing home care. Most of us wouldn't  be happy paying out a five figure bill in cash each year, in our area, for long term care.  Medicare does NOT cover custodial care, which is what most people need in the long run (help with activities of daily living..dressing, transferring, eating, bathing, using the toilet, etc etc)..Traditional health insurance does NOT cover long term care either. That leaves you, your savings and your retirement income, to pay for it as long as it takes. We are talking about TRANSFERRING the financial risk to a long term care insurance carrier, folks, rather than burning up your own personal savings and retirement income.  Unlike car insurance or homeowner's insurance, we are talking about after sustaining a claim (and meeting a short elimination period) YOU STOP PAYING PREMIUMS..(Car ins PREMIUMS and homeowners ins PREMIUMS CONTINUE even after a claim is made)...Major difference!  Further, speak with your individual tax advisor since most plans today are tax qualified, a nice tax write off, is available for you, regarding long term care insurance premiums you pay. Sweet. So the ball is in your court. Read. Ask questions. Think it through. Visit www.aaltci.org/guide ..Long term care insurance is a complicated product. If you're wondering if I bought some for myself, the answer is "yes."  I did the math. It made sense to me. It is not for everyone, but it looks to me like good planning to have it.  Stay healthy & be well...Until next time...

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