Stocks, bonds, annuities, mutual funds, 401(k)s, pensions, CDs…they all make up a well-balanced and diversified portfolio to make sure your assets are protected from market risks.
But what about your long-term health risks? Are your assets protected from them?
Sure, your basic health insurance plan (and Medicare if age 65+) is a good plan and may help you with some long-term care costs. But no plan pays for everything, especially when it involves long-term care in your home, assisted living facilities or nursing homes.
This type of care is limited and it can be very expensive. (National average cost is $78,000.00 annually.1)
It won't happen to me
Living a longer life is near certainty these days. But it comes with the increased risk of health problems (heart, diabetes, arthritis, cancer, Alzheimer's) At retirement age, nearly two-third of Americans will need long term care. That's at least one if not both you and your spouse.
That’s why many financially savvy Americans are adding Long Term Care insurance (LTCi) as part of their retirement portfolios.
Long Term Care insurance is not insurance coverage for care in a hospital, nor is it just nursing home coverage. It provides coverage for the care you may need on a long-term basis—such as before, during or after an illness or accident.
It can be an important piece of asset protection later in your life by helping fund your care—rather than withdrawing money from your personal assets to pay for it.
In addition, when you have LTCi protecting your assets, you’ll be able to:
My health insurance will pay for it.
Most basic health insurance plans provide for preventive service, not long-term care. And Medicare limits coverage to 100 days of care in a skilled nursing facility. That doesn't cover care in an assisted living facility or at home – where you're more likely to want it.
Now, you agree it makes sense to protect your assets from long-term care risks. What should you look for in an LTCi policy?
Fortunately, there are a wide range of benefits and features designed to meet your personal needs. Here are some of the key features to consider:
My family will take care of me.
Can your spouse lift you if needed or provide medical care? Do your children live close to you? Do you want to be a burden to your loved ones? Will it be fair to them or will it disrupt their lives?
In addition, make sure your LTCi policy:
I can pay for it if I need it.
If you have assets over $5 million, you probably can. But are your assets earmarked for long term health care or for your retirement lifestyle?
LTCi is one of the fastest growing insurance products—because of the need for it as well as the asset protection advantages. There are many resources available to you: local insurance agents, the Internet, some employers provide it and various member organizations offer it.
The key is to find a resource you can trust that provides objective, unbiased advice and guidance based on your personal situation—and is not just pressuring you to buy in order to secure a commission.
I'm young so I'll wait to buy it until later on.
If you wait to buy it until you actually need it, you may not qualify due to a health issue. The best time to buy is when you're in your 40s-50s, before you develop any health issues. Plus, the younger you are when you purchase, generally the lower your premium rate will be.
As an IEEE member, you have access to discounted insurance premiums and industry experts inside the Long Term Care Resources Network for IEEE members. Call 1-800-588-7421 and you’ll receive a free one-on-one consultation, which includes a risk analysis based on your personal situation, budget and lifestyle needs, and there is no pressure to buy.
1Prudential Cost of Care Study, 2008.
2Genworth Financial 20!0 Cost of Care Survey.
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LTCi offers you additional advantages: