Are you concerned about the financial strength and stability of the LTC insurance company you’re interested in? The ratings companies which follow do rate long-term insurance companies for financial stability and strength. Though there are no absolute guarantees, the higher the rating of the company you are considering, generally the safer it is and the more likely they will be to pay claims faithfully and to remain strong in the years ahead.
These ratings can go up or down significantly in a relatively short time. I help you find a company for your LTC insurance that has had top notch stable ratings for the past five to ten years in a row. You can rest assured that I personally do not recommend policies from companies with less than stellar financial ratings and certainly not from those which are in bankruptcy – but rather companies with excellent or superior ratings.
AM Best: Ratings are based on a comprehensive evaluation of a long-term care insurance carrier’s financial strength, operating performance and market profile as compared to A.M. Best’s quantitative and qualitative standards. A.M. Best assigns letter ratings that range from the highest A++ (Superior) to the lowest F (in liquidation). Your best bets will be companies rated A++, A+ or A with AM Best. http://www.ambest.com
Moody’s: Ratings are opinions of the ability of the insurance company to repay its financial obligations. Moody’s divides insurance carriers first into two groups: Secure Companies and Vulnerable Companies, and then within each of those categories, a letter ranking is given to each of the insurance carriers. Their top ranking is Aaa (Exceptional), followed by Aa1 (Excellent), then Aa2, Aa3, A1 (Good) all the way down to C (Lowest). I’d be happiest with companies rated Aaa down to Aa3 with Moody’s. http://www.moodys.com 212-553-0377
Standard & Poor’s: Ratings reflect the creditworthiness of a long-term care insurance carrier. Standard & Poor’s assigns letter ratings that range from the highest AAA (Extremely strong) to the lowest of CC (Extremely Weak). I’d feel safest with companies rated AAA to AA- (very Strong) with Standard & Poor’s. http://www.standardpoor.com 212-208-1527
Fitch: (formerly known as Duff and Phelps): They rate what they consider to be the financial strength and security of an insurance carrier. Fitch also uses letters to rate insurance carriers. Their highest rating is AAA (Exceptionally Strong) and their lowest is D (Insolvent). Their very top ratings are AAA, then AA+ (Very Strong), AA, AA-, A+ (Strong) and so forth. http://www.fitchibca.com 212-908-0500
Weiss: Weiss Ratings track the financial safety of an insurance carrier. Weiss prides itself in its total independence in that they do not accept remuneration from the companies they are rating. Many carriers consider Weiss to be the “toughest” in their standards. Weiss also uses letter ratings that range from A+ (Excellent) to F (Failed). You’d be surprised how many companies they rank D or D- (Weak). Their top ratings a A+, A (Excellent), A-, B+ (Good). http://www.weissinc.com 800-289-9222