Medical costs continue to climb, and as we use more medical services as we age, the burden can become even more severe. While Medicare and Medicaid will offset some of the financial costs associated with long-term care, you might need to dramatically decrease your assets to qualify for coverage. Long-term care insurance protects your assets and covers the cost of care when you can’t take care of yourself. Is it a good investment for you?
What to Consider When Purchasing Long-Term Care Insurance
- How old are you? If you are younger than 50, there is a very low chance you will need the insurance. However, it’s good to not wait until it’s too late and you are into your sixties. Purchasing around 50 years old is recommended, as you will get lower premiums and also be less likely to have a condition that might lead to steep premiums.
- Do you know which insurance company you’d like to use? Make sure that you purchase a policy from an established, trustworthy insurance company. Because you might not need the benefits for a while or need them for many years once you do qualify for them, you don’t want to risk purchasing a policy from the wrong company. Read ratings and reports about the company online before you choose.
- What expenses are covered? Some policies have limited coverage or no coverage for some services. Others only cover services for a certain period of time or up to a specific dollar amount. It’s critical to know what you’re getting into before you need to utilize the services.
- What coverage do you need? Most people suggest having three years of coverage secured. Make sure that you use a policy that protects you against medical cost inflation when determining the amount of coverage you will obtain.
- How long is the elimination period? The elimination period is the amount of time between when you get care and when your insurance will start paying.
- How will you become eligible to redeem the benefits? Make sure that you know what defines eligibility.
- Is the policy guaranteed renewable? This won’t mean that your premiums won’t increase in the future, but it does mean that you will remain eligible for coverage even in the future.
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