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LTC Insurance FAQ's

I suspect I'm too old or am uninsurable, so why bother?

I can cover healthy people up to age 79 with most companies. Two companies will go to age 84. At those ages, it will be expensive and the applicant will need to be in very good health and not receiving any care already, and no memory loss issues. The older one is, the less likely they will be accepted, due to health issues. So – if you’re 48-65, talk to me now, before your health record changes any further.

I can often find a very good company that will accept a client who had been previously declined. That’s what’s great about being independently licensed with all the top carriers!

You might be uninsurable – but don’t assume that. Give me a call and in five minutes I can tell you if you have a chance of being accepted by one of the LTC insurance carriers. I CAN often find coverage for diabetics, cancer survivors, heart attack survivors, people with Crohn’s, osteoporosis, arthritis, previous TIA or a single stroke (as long as there aren’t current residual effects from the stroke), etc. So call me.

I can’t find coverage for the following: Anyone over 84, those already using care services or already in a care facility, those who’ve had more than one stroke or strokes with residual effects. I can’t cover people already diagnosed with M.S., AIDS, HIV, muscular dystrophy, polio, anyone using a wheelchair or walker, anyone with ALS, Alzheimer’s, memory loss, senility or dementia.

But call me, and I’ll be able to tell you quickly if there’s a good chance you could get coverage or not. I will ask you questions for about 4-5 minutes and by the end of that session, be able to tell you if you have a high likelihood of being insurable or not.

What if I never use the insurance and end up 'wasting' all that money?

Your odds of requiring Long-Term Care in your lifetime are very high statistically. It’s much higher than your chance of a home fire or catastrophic surgery costs. Add the fact that health insurance and Medicare will not cover most long term care costs, and you immediately see your risks.

We all really end up “using” all insurance we have from the point of view of the peace of mind it gives us. If a crisis hits, we’re covered. It’s good risk management. We don’t want our house to burn down – but we have fire insurance, for example. In the same way, no one wants to end up having to use their Long-term care insurance, but the odds are high that many of us will – so it makes sense to prepare.

One more point: your insurance is not really ultimately for you but it’s really for your spouse, partner or loved ones. It helps them be able to care for you properly and it reduces the stress on them, plus it preserves your assets for their use during and after the long term care.

In the end, I would like it if I went through my life without ever having used any of my major insurances – including LTC insurance. But with LTC insurance, if you ever need to file a claim, you’ll be glad you had the coverage in place.

Talk to me also about hybrid products that combine universal life insurance with a built-in LTC insurance component. There are also hybrid annuity products I can demonstrate for you. Usually these require a much higher up-front outlay of money however.

I think I'm too young. I think I should wait to buy my LTC insurance.

Be sure you have regular health insurance in place first. If you’re under 45 and have children still at home, I’d even put disability insurance ahead of LTC insurance. However, the reasons I recommend even people in their 40’s at least consider LTC insurance include the following:

* We don’t know when we could become uninsurable due to an accident or health condition. You buy LTC insurance with your money, but your “ticket” is your good health. If you wait to purchase the insurance until you see you could use the insurance, you’d probably be uninsurable at that point. Many people in their 40’s have been diagnosed with uninsurable conditions like MS or other serious diseases.

* It’s considerably less expensive to buy this in your 40’s or 50’s – even if you don’t use it until your 80’s. You’ll spend much more in your lifetime if you wait to buy the coverage when you’re older than you are now.

* You’ll be more likely to qualify for the 10-15% preferred health discount for the rest of your life by applying while you’re younger and healthier than you might be if you wait until you’re older.

* A couple companies even return your premium minus claims paid, if you die before age 65.

I will need to think about it some more before acting

Take all the time you want to think about it before applying. That’s your call. Once you do fill out the paperwork, there is a built-in no-risk application process that absolutely gives you lots of time to be completely satisfied.

Most companies take almost 2 months to get all your medical records and get you issued. And then, on top of that, by law you have another 30 day “Right to review” period once you’ve received your policy. This means you have a total of almost 3 months from the time you apply where you can still get ALL your 1-2 month deposit back, with no risk. This way, especially if you are trying to apply before your next birthday, you can apply and still know you can back out and have your deposit 100% refunded if you change your mind.

If you are turned down for coverage, you get all your deposit back. If you change your mind and decide you don’t want the coverage, all your deposit is refunded up to 30 days after you are approved.

So the whole process is a no-risk application process.

I don't want my premiums going up every year. Is there any rate guarantee?

I do have some companies that have a built-in rate guarantee for up to five years. One company even lets you buy additional years up to ten year rate guarantee. You can also choose to pay off your premium in a sin

gle payment or over 10 years. This avoids any potential rate increases in the future.

The companies I currently recommend to my clients have either never had a rate increase, ever, to their existing clients – or have had just one increase to existing clients in about 25 years. Some have had two increases to existing customers. I will be sure to disclose the rate increase history of every company.

Yes, rates can be increased, but only if the state insurance commissioner allows them to raise everyone who has the same kind of policy, in the same class and state at the same time. You cannot be singled out for a rate increase for any reason, even if you get older or even if your health changes dramatically. Your policy is also guarantee renewable, except for non-payment of premium within the grace period.

What tax benefits are there with my LTC insurance?

You should always consult your tax advisor or CPA for tax advice. I can give you a free copy of the “Shoppers Guide to LTC Insurance” which includes some limited information on that also.

Some states like Oregon actually have a tax CREDIT off the state income tax as an incentive to encourage more Oregonians to buy private LTC insurance. Be sure to ask your tax advisor about your particular state’s situation.

Your premium may also qualify – in part or in whole – – for a Federal Income tax deduction. Ask me to show you the chart for your age, or ask your CPA or tax advisor.

Be sure to ask me about State Partnership laws and how they pertain to LTC insurance.

What about businesses? Do they have tax incentives?

YES. I’ll be happy to send you some published material on this exciting topic if you fill out the request form. Again, see your CPA or tax advisor for full details. Corporations, so far, are allowed to be selective about whom they cover. They may choose to cover only certain key executives or “key employees”. Long Term Care Insurance to date does not fall under “Cafeteria Plan” rules or ERISA. C-Corporations have especially attractive tax advantages: The premiums paid by the employer are not counted as taxable income to the employee. The entire premium, with no limit, may be a business expense tax write-off to a C-Corp. At time of claim, the benefits are not generally counted as income to the employee either. Ask me to send you the full explanation in published material I have.

Rules vary from the above if you have an S-Corp, sole proprietorship or LLC. For example, there are limits each year on the dollar amount of premiums that can be deducted as a business expense with S-Corps and others. I’d be happy to give you up-to-date documentation on this subject. You should consult your CPA or tax advisor. Many companies are offering long term care insurance as an employer-paid benefit on an “Executive Carve-out” basis for executives and key employees. You can also offer voluntary LTC insurance plans to your employees, on an employee-paid basis. I’d be delighted to help you with either idea.

Do you offer educational forums we can present to our company?

Absolutely! I’m certified to deliver Education Programs. It’s free, it’s turn-key, simple to implement. Just call me. This is a non-selling environment. Attendees leave with a free copy of my booklet “Dignity for Life” and other materials.

“Do any of your plans have interesting features or riders like Survivorship, Shared Care, indemnity plans, Restoration of Benefits, Ten-Pay option, Pay to Age 65, Family discounts, International coverage, nonforfeiture, Return of premium if the insurance is never used, Waiver of Premium during claim, funds for Home Modifications, etc?”

Yes, yes, yes. I have many, many options I can offer you. I do an intensive fact finding analysis of your needs and wants and then present you with your best options after doing my due diligence of your needs. You’ve come to the right place. Fill out the request-to-meet form or call me at either 503.939.4446 or 360.687.1838.

My workplace is offering long-term care insurance through payroll deduction. Am I correct to assume that you would not be able to beat their price and value?

It’s wonderful to see more and more worksites offering LTC coverage as a voluntary employee-paid benefit. The group plans are getting better and better. However, I can still usually get you a better price and coverage with a private, individual plan than what you may be offered at work – especially if you’re married and in excellent health. Most multi-life or group plans do not give “preferred health” discounts like I can, and some don’t even offer a marital discount. So shop with me before deciding. Let me show you a side-by-side comparison — then you decide which is the best price, best value for your needs. Fair enough? Obviously, if your employer is paying for your coverage, take it. However, many of those plans are “skinny” in what they provide and may leave you without adequate coverage. I’ll gladly give you a free evaluation of what you’re being offered. Then you decide what you want to do when you’re ready.