Most people have insurance against dying and have wished they had thought about and planned for their needs while living. Planning for the future can involve more than planning for your assets after you die, but should also include planning for the possible long-term care needed at any age due to illness, injury or disability. Many of us assume we will not need long-term care until we are older.
According to a recent study by US Department of Health and Human Services, about 40 percent of people currently receiving long term care are adults aged 18 to 64 years old. No one knows when he or she may suffer a stroke, be diagnosed with Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s or if they will experience a paralyzing accident.
What are my choices should I need long-term care? You can rely on your family, however, this can present them with a financial burden should they have to leave their job to care for you. You can rely on the government; however, Medicare only covers skilled care after hospitalization and doesn’t cover assistance with daily living activities. And with Medicaid you would have to spend down your assets – currently defined as having total countable assets of $2000 or less single or $3000 married – after which the program will begin to pay for care and generally does not cover care in a home or assisted living facility.
Research shows that most often care is given in the home and not in a facility, which of course, is a choice we all would prefer. Is there another way? Yes, long term-care insurance. This type of insurance is designed to cover in- home care, community-based care, assisted-living care, and nursing home care. It pays for charges up to a daily or monthly maximum amount until a total maximum dollar amount is reached. You choose those amounts along with the benefit period of two to three years all the way up to lifetime unlimited benefits.
With long-term care insurance you have choices, can stay in control of your assets, and don’t have to become a burden to anyone.