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Old 01-29-2021, 07:51 PM   #61
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Originally Posted by harllee View Post
DH and I are self funding long term care costs for 2 reasons. First is my 90 year old mother's experience. She took out a LTC policy in her 50s. It was inexpensive at that time but over the years the price has gone up up up. It is way too expensive now but she has opted to keep it and take less benefits. I figured up how much she has paid for the policy and what the max is she could get out of it--she would have been much better off just putting the money in a savings account, she could never get her money's worth at this point.

The second reason we are not buying LTC insurance is that we are planning to move into a very nice Continuing Care Retirement Community that does not take LTC insurance. You pay a fee up front and a month payment that does not increase even if you have to go into skilled nursing or memory care.
We came to the same conclusion regarding spending ltc $ on our CCRC . We moved into our Type A CCRC, nearly two years ago and are increasingly glad we did.
We are able to enjoy real tangible benefits now from $$ that would have been spent on ltc premiums. Good example is our current experience getting our Covid vaccines. We just got our second shots while most of our friends and colleagues are spending long wait times and hours in line to get even a reservation. Because of the knowledgeable leadership at our property, we have avoided any Covid in the Independent Living units. I suspect as least partly due to receiving shopping services and meals from staff and high levels of efforts to insure residents are masked and we are living in an environment with rigorous sanitation disciplines.
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Old 01-30-2021, 11:38 AM   #62
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I believe long-time contributor to this site, Nords, also had problems collecting on his father's policy.
John Hancock was a mess from the initial denial of the claim, through three years of processing hassle, to the end where they tried to terminate payments before the policy had reached its limit.
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Old 02-02-2021, 04:58 PM   #63
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No. It's too expensive and most people will never need it to the extent that cost them those expensive premiums.



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Old 02-02-2021, 05:15 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by RetiredAt55.5 View Post
Two replies so far mentioning their house is their LTC insurance.

So, how would that work if one spouse needs ltc and the other spouse is still healthy and living in the house?

Forced to sell or reverse mortgage?
Thatís a good point. In our case, our portfolio would cover ltc costs for many years for one spouse - and then the value of the home(s) would fund final years of surviving spouse. Sort of flipping the original scenario.

Sadly, industry averages (at the time my parents went into assisted living) was ~18 months of life left once you enter a home - on average. My parents both passed sooner than that and left about half the value of their Met Life policies on the table (actuaries are mostly right)...
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:22 PM   #65
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Thatís a good point. In our case, our portfolio would cover ltc costs for many years for one spouse - and then the value of the home(s) would fund final years of surviving spouse. Sort of flipping the original scenario.



Sadly, industry averages (at the time my parents went into assisted living) was ~18 months of life left once you enter a home - on average. My parents both passed sooner than that and left about half the value of their Met Life policies on the table (actuaries are mostly right)...

My DWís mom and stepmom have been in assisted living and nursing care for 8 and 5 years respectively. Her mom is self funded assisted living but running low on funds. Her stepmother is on Medicaid.
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:25 PM   #66
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My parents had LTC policies. My Father took advantage for a couple of multi month stays but my Mother insisted in keeping him home as soon as he reach a point she could (even though she should not have). She never used any of hers. Her experience fighting for in home care was enough to push me to self insured. She was a bit of a pack rat and kept everything and that was the only reason she was able to get a $50/day in home payment. When she applied they said it only covered a certified caretaker and the help she needed and had was not certified. Because she had the original contracts from 20+ years earlier she pointed out there was no stipulation in the contract for certified. After close to a year of fighting with them they paid all the back payments and continued till my Dad died. So keep all your original paperwork.

I plan to use our ROTH accounts to pay for longer term care if needed and hope we don't need it. Unless we both need it at the same time we can fund for many years without any problems. By using the ROTH accounts and surplus from RMD with a simpler lifestyle in our old age, we will not be pushed into a higher tax bracket.
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Old 02-02-2021, 05:49 PM   #67
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Don't have it because after my mom paid in close to 80k for hers, when she was terminal and in hospice care, they denied her. Said she didn't meet "their" criteria.

Lawyer had started after them when she died. With the 90 day wait time to start paying, we were only talking about two months or so worth.

So I have set aside app 400k for wife and I that I don't count towards our retirement fund to be our personal LTC policy.
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Alternative LTC poiicy
Old 02-02-2021, 06:32 PM   #68
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Alternative LTC poiicy

We got ours long time (20 plus years) ago. But the rate are creeping up. For us also. Inflation protection for LTC is very important not sure if you can get it now for a reasonable premium. Also, alternative products are being offered with life insurance policies and portion of it dedicated for the LTC.
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Old 02-02-2021, 06:52 PM   #69
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My FIL and MIL's exact situation. Both are in a full service retirement community. FIL is in independent living apartment, and MIL is in memory care unit. They had no LTC policy. They used their home's equity to help get into a nice place.
We have friends who are approaching this situation. They do have LTC and the last time I spoke to the husband, he said he was glad they purchased the policy a long time ago. Probably in there 50s/60s. They are still in their own home and the policy is covering the cost of the aids coming over morning and night. I donít know the terms of the policy. He is considering a place with a memory care unit, where he can have his own independent apartment. It is taking a real mental and physical toll on him. Itís sad to see, since they are the nicest couple. It just goes to show you, none of knows where our lives will lead. In the end, LTC ins is just a gamble like any other ins, but if you have enough for the premiums, it might be worth it.
That being said, we plan to self insure.
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Old 02-02-2021, 06:57 PM   #70
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Trying to gauge the communities thoughts/opinions on long term care insurance.

Do you have it ? If yes, why ? If no, why not ?
Nope.

Siblings and I bought it for my parents many years ago not aware that, with the agreement of the state insurance commissioner, the insurer could raise our rates after the initial purchase. And they did raise our rates, over and over again. Of course, each individual increase was never enough to justify us abandoning the insurance . . . so we hung on. But we hated it.
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Old 02-02-2021, 08:28 PM   #71
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I carry it for 5 years, over $6,500 / month in benefits (Federal LTC Ins) for about $210 / month. It protects my assets for 5 years...more than enough time to disburse my assets, approaching 2 mil. If I die on the spot....Oh Well.
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:23 PM   #72
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We have it, as a group policy through my employer -- though I pay the premiums, not the employer.

As a general matter, I would prefer to self-insure for LTC, and if I had to do it over again, that is what I would do -- especially because the insurer is permitted to raise the premiums, and has done that several times. So on balance I think it was probably a mistake.

On the other hand, our policy is an unusually good one. For example, if we meet the disability standard, it pays the benefit regardless of how we get care -- could be an AL facility, or a nurse at home, or wife taking care of me, or my living in the zoo for that matter. The only requirement to get the benefit is meeting the standard requirement for disability (requiring assistance with two or more ADLs). The pricing is also favorable and the benefit increases 5% per year, compounded. So as these things go, it is a good deal. But I would still have self insured.

A more useful product, for me, would have been catastrophic LTC coverage. For example, a very low cost policy that would cover LTC with a $1 million deductible, or something like that. That sort of thing would cover one who got severely injured young and needed, say, 20 years of round the clock nursing care. But I am not sure that coverage exists.

My mother had LTC and when she needed it, the insurance company initially denied the claim. I appealed on her behalf, and won. They ended up paying nearly $200k in benefits. So it does pay off for some people...
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:32 PM   #73
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I've done a deep dive on this over the past three years or so. I've found two things: most information does not take into account what your aim in getting the policy is; and generally no one seems to talk about reimbursement vs. indemnity. These things made a big difference to me, so I'll discuss a little about them in case it helps.



A lot of information you find online talks about "the average cost of care." What sort of care? Some people only think about this as nursing home care, and they get LTC insurance to preserve something for their children. I have no children, and my aim with LTC insurance is to avoid a nursing home at all costs. I want home care.


Quick information online will burble about how home care is cheaper. In fact, home care is only cheaper if you need a certain number of hours of care per day. If you need 24-hour care? Let's say you have to have someone sleep over in case you need to get to the bathroom. 24-hour care at home is way, way more expensive than a nursing home.


I already have two policies, from two different insurers, that taken together would cover me for $340, or about 14 hours a day. The remaining 10 hours is on me. Would I need a registered nurse, an experienced health-care person, or "just anybody" who might help, say, with washing and dressing and such? Prices differ sharply and could add up to $100,000-150,000 or even more a year just to fill that donut hole.



So I've been looking into a third policy. The two I've already got have an inflation rider, which is good; they're not fully valid outside the US, which is bad; and they're both reimbursement-only, which is also bad. Reimbursement means you have to hire a health worker they approve of, and that worker has to submit their hours and be reimbursed. An indemnity policy just gives you the money, and you decide whom to hire and how it gets spent.


The last issue for me is price hikes. I hate them. So when I bought my current policies I got "ten pays." These are no longer offered, but the idea was to pay a ridiculous amount of money each year for 10 years, and then your policy is fully paid up forever. In looking for a third policy, I've gone to the hybrids. These can be paid up in one giant payment -- i.e., write the company a check for, say, $100,000, murmur the incantation "Please don't go out of business" and never pay anything again.


There's a great range of hybrids of various sorts. There are hybrids that will give you your money back if you decide you're not going to use the policy after all. (You will, of course, have lost the investment use of that money for whatever period of time you had the policy in force.) Some hybrids are good anywhere in the world, some aren't. There are LTC/life insurance hybrids, and there are other sorts with other pros and cons. I've told the agents at Nationwide and NY Life (the two companies I'm most interested in) that I'm only open to an indemnity policy.



This is all worth it to me for peace of mind. I understand those who prefer to self-insure. One last thing to consider, and this is relevant to self-insuring: LTC policies are triggered by clearly defined milestones. You must be unable to perform two or three acts of daily living (washing, eating, dressing, transferring). But what about the ordinary needs of getting older? What if you need, say, a part-time helper to drive you and to do a few chores you can't quite manage any more? Will LTC cover that? No, it will not, and that's when you may be grateful you focused on self-insuring.
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Old 02-02-2021, 09:47 PM   #74
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We self-insure. I kept an "LTC File" for almost two decades until we both got so old as to make it a non-starter. In the intervening years, the LTC product and market went to hell.



LTC is "sold, not bought," I was once told by a expert. A broker is pushing it for a commission, with little regards to your needs.
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Old 02-02-2021, 10:26 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by Foghorn Leghorn View Post
Trying to gauge the communities thoughts/opinions on long term care insurance.

Do you have it ? If yes, why ? If no, why not ?
No. And, will not purchase it because I view it as a bad financial deal.

The sad fact is that, with rare exception, LTCi does not "cover" your LTC costs. Instead, it might help "defray" some of your LTC costs at best. That's because almost all LTCi has a capped Total Benefit. IOW, it doesn't necessarily last until you die but, instead, lasts until you reach the maximum Total Benefit amount. This is true of traditional LTCi policies, as well as hybrid LTCi policies like the one described in Post #28, which has a capped Total Benefit. Read this blog post by Darrow Kirkpatrick for more info. His message is best summed up with this quote: "People buy insurance for the peace of mind, but what they actually get in financial terms is another matter. LTCI won’t fully protect your wealth: It just defrays the costs in the worst scenarios."

https://www.caniretireyet.com/long-t...ent-buying-it/

I know that many folks say that it provides them with 'peace of mind' but, I'm honestly not sure why, given what the product actually provides.

I would more readily buy a Type A CCRC contract than purchase LTCi because, that really does cover your care 'for as long as you need it', even if you run out of funds. With this approach, the primary risk is that the CCRC goes out of business, which is rare and doesn't result in you being out on the street.
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Old 02-03-2021, 06:16 AM   #76
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LTC insurance was more of an emotional than rational purchase for my mother. "Peace of mind". The story is similar to Nords. Mom's policy required inability to do two ADLs and had some vague cognitive criteria. She was in assisted living for 5 years and we got benefits for 1/3 of the time. The ADL for eating is satisfied is a person can spoon food into their mouth if it is put in front of them. Inability to purchase, plan, and prepare a meal doesn't count. I'm not buying LTC but if you want to I suggest that you look closely at the policy provisions. ADLs vs IADLs https://www.alz.org/media/documents/...ving-scale.pdf
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Old 02-03-2021, 08:25 AM   #77
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Our coverage is as follows. We got it when we were in our late 40’s and premiums were extremely low. 15+ years later we are keeping it. New products that allow you to have in-home care (preferred by us), and refund premiums if not used are way to expensive now. We expect the policy to defray our LTC costs.

Annual Premiums:
DH $1,777 Premiums paid to date $13,366
DW $1,442 Premiums paid to date $11,209
If the policy is cancelled, funds paid in are used when claims are filed.
Increases in the benefit amount are available every 3 - 5 years.
Premium Increases are capped at 25% every 2 years
Lifetime Max Benefit: $547,500
Daily Benefit Nursing Home or Alternate Care: $300 day
Daily Benefit Community Based Care: $180 day
Caregiver Benefit: $2,250 per year
Emergency Alert System Benefit: $180 per month
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Unum policy
Old 02-03-2021, 03:50 PM   #78
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Unum policy

I have a policy with Unum through my employer. Just me, not my wife.

Here is the premium history:
2000 - $106/month, $1,272/year
2014 - increased to $186/month, $2,232/year
2021 - 311.40/month, $3,732/year

The benefits are pretty good - there is a 90 day elimination period, but the benefits have increased at 5% simple interest per year for the last 20 years - in other words, they've doubled.

Today they are (monthly):
Facility - $12,000
Assisted living- $7,200
Home health care - $6,000

I spoke with a LTC insurance expert, who thought the the $2,232/year was fantastic. She said a policy like this purchased new, today, would be over $12,000.

So, I'm hanging on for now despite the 2021 significant premium increase. Do I equivocate? Darn'd right I do, esp. after the premium rose this year. Note that in my state (Massachusetts), the Commissioner of Ins. has to approve any premium increases.

Would be curious how this policy (coverage/cost) compares to what anyone else may have.
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Old 02-03-2021, 04:08 PM   #79
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Originally Posted by leeg View Post
I have a policy with Unum through my employer. Just me, not my wife.

Here is the premium history:
2000 - $106/month, $1,272/year
2014 - increased to $186/month, $2,232/year
2021 - 311.40/month, $3,732/year

The benefits are pretty good - there is a 90 day elimination period, but the benefits have increased at 5% simple interest per year for the last 20 years - in other words, they've doubled.

Today they are (monthly):
Facility - $12,000
Assisted living- $7,200
Home health care - $6,000

I spoke with a LTC insurance expert, who thought the the $2,232/year was fantastic. She said a policy like this purchased new, today, would be over $12,000.

So, I'm hanging on for now despite the 2021 significant premium increase. Do I equivocate? Darn'd right I do, esp. after the premium rose this year. Note that in my state (Massachusetts), the Commissioner of Ins. has to approve any premium increases.

Would be curious how this policy (coverage/cost) compares to what anyone else may have.
What's your total benefit cap?
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Old 02-03-2021, 04:36 PM   #80
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No. And, will not purchase it because I view it as a bad financial deal.

The sad fact is that, with rare exception, LTCi does not "cover" your LTC costs. Instead, it might help "defray" some of your LTC costs at best. That's because almost all LTCi has a capped Total Benefit. IOW, it doesn't necessarily last until you die but, instead, lasts until you reach the maximum Total Benefit amount. This is true of traditional LTCi policies, as well as hybrid LTCi policies like the one described in Post #28, which has a capped Total Benefit. Read this blog post by Darrow Kirkpatrick for more info. His message is best summed up with this quote: "People buy insurance for the peace of mind, but what they actually get in financial terms is another matter. LTCI won’t fully protect your wealth: It just defrays the costs in the worst scenarios."

https://www.caniretireyet.com/long-t...ent-buying-it/

I know that many folks say that it provides them with 'peace of mind' but, I'm honestly not sure why, given what the product actually provides.

I would more readily buy a Type A CCRC contract than purchase LTCi because, that really does cover your care 'for as long as you need it', even if you run out of funds. With this approach, the primary risk is that the CCRC goes out of business, which is rare and doesn't result in you being out on the street.
To be fair that product does offer an unlimited duration rider, but it ain't cheap (e.g. add another 40%+ for the illustrations I read)
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