Long-Term Care Insurance
Your estate and family are protected from the incredible cost associated with senior care.
Nursing Homes are Pricey
Nursing homes are extremely expensive, and it may shock you to learn how expensive the care is. MetLife reports that the average monthly rate for assisted living in 2012 is more than $3,000 a month. The average cost of a month in a nursing home is more than $7,000 a month, and average hourly rate for home nursing care is $21 an hour. How long would it take to deplete your estate at those high rates?
Medicaid has a Five-Year Look Back Period
Medicaid is a means-based assistance program, and you must be essentially destitute before they will pay for your care. In the past, people simply dispersed their estates early by giving everything to their heirs. However, Medicaid has caught on to this and has taken steps to avoid this kind of activity. They now have a five-year look back period for gifts, bequeaths and property transfers. Any property given away or gifts made during the five years prior to applying for Medicaid will have to be repaid by your heirs in full.
The beauty of long-term care insurance is that it ensures that you will have the funds you need to pay for your own care. When you first realize that you need more medical care, you can disperse your estate however you see fit without worrying about penalties from Medicaid.
Long-Term Care Insurance: More Options for Level of Care
If you run out of money and cannot get Medicaid yet because of the look back period, your family will have to make some hard choices regarding your care. With only your limited income from Social Security or retirement programs, your family may be forced to try caring for you themselves. When you have long-term care insurance, there are more options available for care. If a family member is caring for you, they can be paid for their time. You can have home health aides provide you with the assistance you need, or you can choose a private room rather than a semi-private one.
Long-term care insurance is starting to expand and more plans are appearing. Shared care products let married couples take out connected plans that allow for a transfer of benefits. Hybrid plans feature riders for long-term care that converts into an additional life insurance benefit if not used. Don’t put the burden of your care on your children, and don’t let your estate that you have worked so hard for be reduced to ashes by the high cost of senior care.
Protect your family and your estate with long-term care insurance. To learn about the options, speak with a licensed agent today!