Should you buy a long-term care insurance policy?

On Behalf of | Jul 13, 2022 | elder law

There’s a good chance that you’re going to need long-term care at some point in your life. This can be a daunting prospect, especially if you’re feeling healthy and hope to remain in your home for the rest of your life. Making matters worse is the fact that many people have heard tragic stories of inappropriate care received in nursing homes and other long-term care facilities. But don’t let all of that paralyze you into inaction.

With strong planning, you can ensure that you have the financial resources to cover your long-term care expenses, should they arise. You can also research your care options to ensure that if you do need this kind of care that it’s at a facility that suits your needs. If you neglect to plan or simply put it off, then you could be putting your estate at risk of being eaten away by the exorbitant costs associated with long-term care.

Should you purchase a long-term care insurance policy?

A long-term care insurance policy can be a great way to ensure that your future long-term care needs are covered, thereby protecting your estate. But these policies aren’t as simple to understand as you may think. In fact, there are many things that you need to take into consideration before you seek out one of these policies, including each of the following:

  • Whether you have any pre-existing conditions that may block your ability to seek out an appropriately comprehensive policy
  • The premium rate, as some of these policies can be enormously expensive, and they can increase over time. You could also be paying on your policy for decades
  • What, exactly, the policy covers, as there is oftentimes confusing language in policy documentation that can leave you unknowingly susceptible to policy gaps
  • How the benefits can be used, as there will be caps on the amount that the policy will pay over time and how your benefits can be used
  • Many long-term care insurance policy claims end up denied, which means that you’ll need to be prepared for the appeals process

We don’t bring these points up to discourage you from seeking out long-term care insurance if you feel like that’s your best option. We simply want you to know some of the risks associated with these policies so that you can consider your other options and can make the planning decisions that are right for you.

What other options do you have?

Outside of long-term care insurance, you have other options here. They may include Medicaid planning and the use of a qualified income trust, sometimes referred to as a Miller Trust, or an irrevocable trust. However, there are implications to each of these options that you should be aware of, which is why it’s imperative that you conduct the research and seek out the guidance necessary to grasp a full picture of what your decisions entail.

Do you need an attorney on your side?

We know that it can be difficult to figure out how best to plan for the future. There are a lot of ways to go about it, and it can quickly become so complicated that it’s easier to just put it off. But don’t let that happen to you. Instead, if you feel like the process is complicated, then consider discussing your vision of the future with an attorney who you trust to assist you throughout the process. That way, you can create the plan that is best for you, your estate, and your family.