Health Insurance, Long Term Care
|Insurance Q.& A. : Health Insurance, Long Term Care|
What does long-term care cover?
A typical long-term care policy covers extended care regardless of whether the care is medically related to a specific illness or injury. According to the National Network of Estate Planners in Denver, a typical policy will pay for care "provided either in a nursing care facility or at home. In some cases, long-term care also extends to adult day-care centers and other community-based care facilities. The following expenses should be explicitly listed in your policy contract as covered: respite care, home modification, hospice care, caregiver training, professional health-care services, and personal care adviser and bed-registration fees if you are moving to a nursing home.
Is there any rule of thumb to determine if I should buy
long-term care insurance?
Long-term care insurance can easily cost more than $1,000 a year, which is one reason some experts say that if in addition to your home, you expect to have over $10,000 in assets and over $30,000 per year in income when you reach your 80s, then a long-term care policy with high benefits and compounded inflation protection should be a reasonable investment if you can find and qualify for a good one. " According to the National Network of Estate Planners, Denver, Colo."
If I'm in my 30s or 40s, why should I be concerned about long-term care?
If you're under 50, you can't be blamed if you might consider purchasing a long-term care policy a waste of money. After all, it may be a long time before you need long-term hospitalization or nursing care. But just as with life insurance, it's never too early to think about buying long-term care coverage. Such insurance is much cheaper when you're young because the insurer knows it's unlikely you'll need to be hospitalized any time soon. For example, if you sign up when you're 50, your annual premiums will be about 30% as much as those for a 75-year old, and you will be covered for 25 years more. In addition, it's much easier to qualify for long-term care insurance when you are young. All the application forms ask you about a host of medical conditions you may have experienced: If you answer "yes" to any one of them, your application may be rejected. But since most of those conditions develop only as you grow older, you probably haven't had them. Long-term care policies are good investments for most people. Being young doesn't automatically exempt you from deciding whether to buy such a policy.
From whom should I buy long-term care coverage?
If you decide to buy long-term care insurance, choose an insurance company that will be financially strong enough to pay any claim you might make. Stick to plans offered by insurers who get the top financial ratings from independent rating firms. You also want to be sure that you're comfortable with the person who actually sells you the plan. According to the National Network of Estate Planners, Denver, "You should develop a reasonably high trust level with the person who presents a coverage plan to you. You should feel that you have the ability to openly communicate your concerns and receive accurate answers to your questions. It would be beneficial for you to buy from a representative of an organization that can provide current and future service to you as questions or needs arise."
What is the typical premium for long-term care insurance?
A typical policy begins paying benefits 20 days after the onset of an illness or injury that requires long-term care. While there are a lot of variables that can affect premium rates, the biggest one is one's age when the insurance is purchased. Typical average preferred rates might be:
A preferred rate might typically be a 25%
discount from a standard type rate. If a couple applies jointly, many companies will
automatically grant them a discounted rate. The above characteristics represent common
provisions, benefits and rating procedures in the industry. However, keep in mind that
each company will have its own unique policy and rates. Just make sure you understand what
you're buying and how much your are paying.
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