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LONG TERM CARE

Long Term Care is an essential element of your asset protection plan. It is designed to help protect your family, your assets and your lifestyle.

The current average cost of Long Term Care in Florida* is approximately $168.00 a day which equals $61,320 a year, not including regular medical expenses, ancillary costs (i.e. prescription drugs, wheelchair, etc) and other household expenses (i.e. grocery shopping, paying your bills, etc.). Current statistics show that 50% of all LTC recipients are under the age of 65 and 1 out of every 2 people over the age of 85 will need Long Term Care. 95% of all Long Term Care recipients make their premiums back between 6 and 18 months of being on claim.

Long Term Care Insurance covers both in home care, assisted living, and nursing home care, whichever is needed at the time of claim. Home health care includes a multitude of medical and personal services provided in your own home, making it possible to retain a measure of independence and receive care in a comfortable and familiar environment up to 24 hours a day.

Two common types of Long Term Care insurance are the Cash Policy and the Reimbursement Policy. With the Cash Policy you are sent a check for your benefit amount at the beginning of each month (once you have qualified and completed your chosen elimination period) and can spend or save the money how you see fit. In a Reimbursement Policy you submit your bills and are reimbursed; similar to health insurance. Today, most reimbursement companies will pay directly to the provider of care if you so choose.

There is a third type of policy called an indemnity plan. It is a bit of a hybrid to the other plans. You have to be paying for care and show proof of services rendered. You will receive the reimbursement for what you have spent up to your benefit amount and if you have not spent your benefit amount they will pay you the whole benefit amount for the month.

Your policy benefits begin when a physician states that you need the care for a minimum of 90 days and . you are unable to perform 2 Activities of Daily Living (ADLs) and you have satisfied your elimination period, if any. Most plans define ADLs as bathing, toileting, dressing, eating, transferring, or continence. This is something we review on a company by company basis.

Common misconceptions about Long Term Care are:

  • It won’t happen to me, I won’t need it
  • I am covered by Medicare. However, Medicare doesn’t cover in home custodial care or a long term care facility.
  • Worse case, Medicaid will pay for it.. Medicaid may provide you with one of a few beds allotted to a facility (if one is available) but you must spend down your assets first. Wouldn’t you rather stay home than go to a nursing home?
  • My family can take care of me. Yes, maybe, but wouldn’t you rather the family visit and a nurse’s aid take care of the cooking and your personal hygiene?
  • I can’t afford Long-term care Insurance. You may be surprised at the premium cost; premiums are generally recouped within 12-18 months of using the policy. Typically annual premiums are half the price of the initial monthly benefit (depending on your age and health rating) and 5% compounding for inflation protection will double that monthly benefit in about 16 years.