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Key Features and Issues of Long Term Care Insurance

By Compuquotes Team on March 27th, 2008
Long Term Care

A simple fact of life is that as we age, our health deteriorates. Any illnesses that are chronic or debilitating will most likely mean that we need long term care services. Of course, as with any service, the cost is not cheap. In order to cover yourself financially for long term care services, as you age, you should consider whether or not you require long term care insurance.

Long term care insurance covers many things, including nursing home or assisted living fees, as well as adult, home and home personal care services. There are things you need to consider before taking out a policy though.

Coverage

There are several different types of long term insurance policies available, so you need to investigate exactly which one is right for your circumstances. A broad policy will provide coverage for all types of long term care services, while targeted policies, such as Nursing Home Only, will only provide coverage for specified long term care services.

Be realistic when examining what care options might be needed in the future. No one wants to think of themselves becoming frail and dependent upon others, but over time our bodies wear down. Carefully examine your family history before making a decision on which policy you choose.

Benefit Amount

This is the daily or monthly amount that will be allocated towards different types of long term care services. Be sure to read the fine print carefully before taking out a policy, as different types of services may be awarded different amounts.

Benefit Period

You can generally choose the length of time the benefit amount will be paid to you upon instigating a claim. Obviously this will affect the premium price though, so take this into consideration when choosing how long you want the benefit to be paid.

Waiting Period After Taking Policy Out

Make sure you are aware of how long you have to have had the policy before you can begin making claims. The waiting period varies from insurance company to insurance company, so don't assume the length of time is all the same when you are shopping around for policies.

Waiting Period Before Benefit

It is important to understand exactly how long you have to be ill before you can make a claim. Is it 10 days, or 100? Remember that any costs before this period will have to be paid by you, so it is an important factor when considering long term care insurance.

Other things to consider are whether you are covered for pre-existing conditions, assuming you disclosed this information, if you are exempt from continuing the premium payments once you begin receiving a benefit and that the policy will be renewed automatically as long as you continue making payments, even if you begin to suffer from an illness or condition after the initial insurance was taken out that would have excluded you from taking out the insurance policy.
If you have the funds in reserve to cover long term care, then you may not need long term care insurance. But for most people, the costs of long term care services are expensive, and not something that can be covered easily by their savings. Long term care insurance can provide peace of mind, and allow you to focus on regaining your health, and not worry about where the money will be coming from to pay for the services required.

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