Category Archives: long term care insurance prices california

Is Your Mental Model Flawed In Long-Term Care Planning?

As medical technology continues to advance and people are able to fight off diseases and recover from conditions that could have meant their death 30, 40, 50 years ago, you begin to wonder if your thoughts on long-term care planning are also in the past.

People are now living longer and fuller lives because of breakthroughs in medical science. Dr. Bruce Chernoff, President of The Scan Foundation recently spoke on PBS News Hour’s Fixing America’s Long-Term Care System segment and said, “There is a real misconception, we all have built this architecture in our mind that I’ll live a really really full life, then I’ll hit that cliff, and it will be done.” Dr. Chernoff continues his thoughts by saying, “if you look back a generation or two, people actually did live a pretty full life, and often had a very serious event from which they might not survive, or might not live a very long time.”

He contends, because this is how people have grown up, they have built a model in their mind that says, this is what happened to my parents, this is what will happen to me. This could explain why that even though statistics show 7 out of 10 people age 65 and older will need some form of long-term care assistance, the vast majority of them have not planned for it, and usually just change the subject when the topic comes up. According to Dr. Chernoff, because of medical breakthroughs and the fact that people are living longer, it is time to change that mental model.

The other issue Dr. Chernoff brings up is the lack of education on the topic of long-term care planning. Many people simply do not know what is available to them, what options they have when it comes to planning, and what considerations need to be made before that health event takes place, and you need to access long-term care services for yourself or a loved one.

Have you taken a few minutes out of your day to design what your future will look like should you require long-term care services? If you have not, there is no better time than right now to click the link below and schedule a free no obligation review for long-term care planning in California today.

You are planning to live a full life, make sure it is how you envisioned it no matter what happens.

Contact us today to explore all your current options. Fill out the form to the right and start with your free guide on Long-Term Care Insurance..

The WSJ asks , “should you purchase long-term-care insurance?”

Long Term Care Insurance and Estate PlanningWhen planning your retirement, the possibility of needing some form of long-term-care becomes a 7 out of 10 chance after age 65. You could get lucky and live a full and healthy life without ever requiring long-term-care services in California (3 out of 10 people), or you could fall under some level of assistance from short term in-home care, to long term skilled facility care (the other 7 out of 10 people).

Proponents of long-term-care such as Dr. Mark Meiners, a professor of health administration and policy at George Mason University, says, “That isn’t to say long-term-care insurance is right for everyone. It is not. The wealthy can be reasonably sure their savings will be enough to pay directly for long-term care, whatever its duration. And despite concerns about quality, Medicaid is there for the poor. But what about consumers with midlevel savings—in other words, most people? These consumers need long-term-care insurance the most. They tend to have too little savings to pay for even a couple of years of care without impoverishing themselves and their families, and too much to qualify for Medicaid” (WSJ, 2012).

Opponents of long-term-care such as Prescott Cole, a senior staff attorney at California Advocates for Nursing Home Reform say, “For those with little wealth, a policy will never be suitable. They will be covered by the long-term care provided by Medicaid. For individuals with incomes of at least $250,000 a year and substantial savings, the smarter move might be to either self-insure or use their resources to pay for high-level in-home health care. For mid-wealth individuals, the answer is not so clear. The average annual premiums for policies sold to seniors run around $3,500 per year. But few—if any—policies pay 100% of the daily private pay rate, currently about $250 per day. Policies typically pay $150 a day. So, even a resident with a policy will have to dig into savings to pay the difference” (WSJ, 2012).

Mr. Prescott’s argument is one of setting up a savings plan in the event something should happen. While they may be a great idea, most people are simply not disciplined enough to set aside $3,500 per year for 30 years with a strong rate of return, and with the stock market cycles, you never really know if 30 years from now your investments will flourish or flounder at the time you need them most. People buy car insurance with the odds of 1 in 340 suffering a loss, or 1 in 1200 home insurance policies suffering a loss due to fire. In long-term-care, after age 65, 7 out of 10 will need to access some level of benefits or pay out of pocket for care.

Dr. Meiners says it best, “The important thing to understand is that there are a wide range of policies offering different degrees of security, but all preferable to taking the chance of being financially decimated. According to estimates done by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance, a typical couple buying a shared policy providing immediate benefits worth $328,500 at age 55 pays an annual premium averaging $2,700. By age 80 their joint benefit has grown to $708,000 with the built-in inflation protection. Alternatively, a typical couple buying a shared policy with $219,000 of coverage could reduce their premium by about 20% to 25%. That’s a viable option for those who are worried about this risk. If more coverage is affordable, buy more coverage. But some is better than none” (WSJ, 2012).

Start your California long-term-care planning today. Contact us today for your free and confidential review.

Source:

Should You Purchase Long-Term-Care Insurance? (2012, May 14). Retrieved July 13, 2015

When You Are In Long Term Care, Hope This Never Happens To You!

Ca;pers Long Term Care AlternativeUnlike your neighbors, you were smart; you planned, did your research, knew the benefits of planning for your long-term care needs in California, purchased a plan, and began to enjoy the peace of mind knowing you are protected.

Then it happens…

You receive a letter one day stating your premiums are going up 85%. How could this be, you planned everything out, researched the options, and selected a plan that promised fixed premiums for life with no risk of rising costs.

If you have been following the CalPERS class action lawsuit in California, you would know, this is exactly what happened to approximately 150,000 long term care insurance policy buyers that bought certain policies from 1995 to 2004.

According to the class action information website,” This is a class action lawsuit that seeks relief for individuals who purchased certain Long Term Care (“LTC”) insurance policies through CalPERS and have been subjected to recent premium hikes of approximately 85%. The complaint alleges that CalPERS promised its policyholders that the premiums for its LTC policies were fixed for life and would never rise.

The complaint further alleges that at the time CalPERS made these promises, it had underpriced its policies and knew, or should have known, that premiums were certain to rise in the future. The complaint asserts causes of action for Breach of Contract, Breach of the Implied Covenant of Good Faith and Fair Dealing, Rescission, and Declaratory and Injunctive Relief.”

While this case is still ongoing at this time, it is estimated that settlement from this type of litigation could take 2.5 to 3 years! What if you were already accessing your benefits? What if you had not planned for any increased costs? Would you be fully protected under the suit when you’re in a nursing home?

The article says, “Your decisions going forward (whether to drop the policy, take reduced benefits, or pay higher premiums) are entirely up to you and are dependent on your individual circumstances.”

If you want to avoid the pain and confusion that happens when a program underprices their policies to make a quick influx of cash, you need to obtain competent and professional assistance. The California Long Term Care insurance agents study their carriers’ every day to know the best and most price stable policies available on the market.

Unlike car insurance where you can shop and take advantage of short-term pricing opportunities, long-term care insurance is a policy you typically buy one time and keep until you need to access the benefits. It is possible to save money, but make sure you work with a professional so your plan does not become a legal nightmare later in life.

Get Started Planning Today, Contact Your Professional CLTC Agent Now!

Source: http://www.calpersclassactionlawsuit.com/index.html

Could Picking The Wrong California Long Term Care Insurance Cost You 90%?

Could Picking The Wrong California Long Term Care Insurance Cost You 90%?

ebookAs people grow older and retire in California, they begin to consider what life will be like in their golden years, some may still work part time, some will travel, and others may never “retire” but be active. However, many will have health and other challenges to face. In fact, approximately 70% of people 65 and older will face some sort of long-term care need. These are thoughts are often put off for as long as possible, but when you are rushed and planning at the last minute, selecting the wrong company could mean your rates go up 90%, like they did for this Laguna Woods couple.

As people plan for their future needs, a long-term care insurance policy in California can be crucial when protecting an estate, maintaining dignity in care, and meeting the needs of a growing and culturally diverse population base. However, if you are like Mike and Judy Holtzman of Laguna Woods, it is possible that the policy to protect your assets could take the gold out of the golden years.

“We were told when we first bought the policies that the rates could go up,” said Mike Holtzman, 67. “But 90% seems outrageous.” It is unclear if the Holtzmans had hired competent and professional help to guide them through California’s difficult, often broken, long term care insurance system, but we share their sentiment: “This seems unconscionable,” Holtzman said. “We bought these policies because this is the only insurance you really need. Long-term care will eat up all your assets.”

As insurance companies begin to adjust for the growth in senior health care needs, many companies have decided to exit long-term care insurance underwriting because of the great expenses senior care can entail, including dealing with chronic long-term care health issues that require semi-skilled and skilled care staff. Those companies that did not plan accordingly prior to the baby boom are now playing catch up to remain profitable and to be able to honor the contracts they took on in earlier years.

As you age, the costs of long-term care insurance coverage increases due to the likelihood you will be closer to needing the benefits. Hiring a competent and professional California long-term care insurance specialist could also mean the difference between getting a 90% rate hike vs. 1 to 3%.

Fill out the form to the right of this blog and contact your licensed California Long Term Care Specialist today to know your options!

What Are These Celebrities Saying About Long Term Care?

Angela Basset, Rob Lowe, Jim Nantz, Maria Shriver, Zachary Quinto, and Maggie Gyllenhaal recently shared their experiences and thoughts on the issue of “having that conversation” with a loved one regarding long term care planning.

We have helped over 30,000 people with their long-term care coverage needs.

Fill out our short form to the right of this page, download your Free guide and let one of our specialists help you discover all options available to you. This service is absolutely FREE!

According to a February 2015 ABC News story, “Bassett, 56, had to deal with different long-term care situations involving both her mother, Betty Jane, who died last year, and mother-in-law, who was diagnosed with ALS and is now living with her family. “I know the importance of it,” she said of having the discussion with your kids or other loved ones. “It’s absolutely something we are each going to deal with, our parents as well as ourselves, one day.”

Rob Lowe made a point about YOU being the architect of your future, and shared a story about his father who not only one a prestigious golf and tennis championship, but who also received a diagnosis of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that very same week.

No one actually knows how they are going to age, if they will get sick, require care, or even if they outlive all of their family. Having the conversation about long-term care can be difficult because you need to admit that at some point like 70% of the 65 and older population, you may need some help. Angela Basset and Rob Lowe also pointed out that neither Medicare, the Affordable Care Act, nor neither do the vast majority of other health care insurance policies cover long-term care medical expenses.

California is also a state with a very scattered long-term care network. There are over a 100 program options with 20 offices that administer those programs. There are currently discussions on reworking the State long-term care systems to cut back on waste, confusion, and being able to meet the needs of a growing culturally diverse population.

Long term care planning includes certain medical needs that most health insurance companies are not equipped to take care of, that is why it is important; as the architect of your future, that you get a solid blueprint in place of what your future is going to look like.

That is why California Long Term Care Insurance Agency is here to help you understand all of your options and find the best possible plan designed to fit your needs now, and in the future.

Fill out our short form to the right of this page, download your Free guide and let one of our specialists help you discover all options available to you. This service is absolutely FREE!

ABC News Source: http://abcnews.go.com/Entertainment/angela-bassett-long-term-care-conversation/story?id=29221506

Is Long Term Care in California Broken?

broken health careAccording to an article on capradio.org, the current long-term care system in California is spread across 20 state departments and agencies representing 112 programs. How would anyone know what agency or program is the right one for them without going through a substantial amount of paperwork, headache, and possibly some bright red tape?

According to the report published by the Senate Select Committee on Aging and Long-Term Care on January 5, 2015, “The challenge before us is two-fold. First, over 5.1 million persons age 65 and over will call California home by 2015. Due to aging Baby Boomers and migration patterns, that number will grow to 8.4 million by 2030 – or nearly one fifth of the population. Second; as the Baby Boom population ages, it will become more ethnically diverse, driving demand for culturally competent service delivery.

Reliance upon our existing patchwork of programs and services to serve our growing aging and disabled population will result in unnecessary expenditures, inequitable access, and irrelevant services. Furthermore, under the existing fragmented structure there is no leader to oversee or coordinate the entire range of services, and no mechanism for accountability or improvement” (Liu, et al, 2015).

We know that the system as it stands needs help. We also know that people coming in to the system without any formal training or knowledge on the complex and often confusing structure of the long-term care system in California will also need help. When your health and well-being is important in your golden years of retirement, it would be foolhardy to not at least get a plan in place, even something as simple as knowing what programs and agencies you could access based on your unique and individual needs.

The California Long Term Care Insurance Agency (CLTC) wants you to know you are not alone. CLTC, is committed to providing you the latest information and developments on the state of long-term care in California. We are currently seeking men and women age 45 and up that want to get answers and know their options when the time comes to access long-term care insurance in California. Fill out the form to the right of this page for a free, confidential, and educational evaluation of your special circumstances right now.

Sources:

Liu, C., Wolk, L., Beall, J. (January 5, 2015) A Shattered System: Reforming Long-Term Care in California – Envisioning and Implementing an IDEAL Long-Term Care System in California. Retrieved online June 8, 2015 at http://sd25.senate.ca.gov/sites/sd25.senate.ca.gov/files/ Aging Long%20TermCareReport.pdf

Adler, B., (January 15, 2015) Senate Report: Overhaul California’s Long-Term Care System Retrieved online June 8, 2015 at http://www.capradio.org/articles/2015/01/15/senate-report-overhaul-californias-long-term-care-system/

This podcast might save you or your family a lot of money and heartache!

Affordable LTCI Premiums

Katie O’ Rourke
Managing Partner

Our own Managing Partner, Katie O’ Rourke, was featured as an expert guest on the Essential Boomer. Katie is an honorary boomer and as we all know, a 30 year veteran of the insurance industry and Managing Partner of California Long Term Care insurance Services. In this podcast, Katie shared the benefit of her expertise in long-term care insurance as she provided frank and insightful answers to the following questions:

 

• What is Long Term Care?
• Where is Long Term Care typically provided?
• What are the odds of me needing long-term care?
• What does long term care cost?
• Wouldn’t a lot of families be able to provide the necessary resources?
• Don’t Medicare and health insurance provide some kind of coverage for long-term care?
• When is the best time to investigate long-term care insurance?
• What is the qualification process for Long Term Care insurance
• If somebody has a pre-existing condition, are they still able to obtain long-term care insurance?
• How do the plans work and what’s the cost?
• What are the different flavors of long-term care insurance?
• What should I look for in a policy?
• Are there any tax breaks with long-term care insurance?
• Can I get a plan at work?

This podcast (http://essentialboomer.guide/katie/ ) might save you or your family a lot of money and heartache!

Listen to this very informative podecast and then contact us with any further questions you may have. We are here for you!

Long Term Care Insurance and Healthcare Professionals

healthcare-workers- 2

Ask most any nurse, doctors, or health care professionals the value of long-term care planning, and you are bound to get stories of joy, love, compassion, perseverance. Ask again, and you may get the stories of sadness, desperation, fear, and frustration felt by the families that failed to plan.

Healthcare professionals have a unique perspective on Long Term Care planning. Faced with daily exposure to illness, injury, disease, and the effects of old age that create a long-term care need makes them more inclined to think “what if?” about their planning needs.

Interestingly, if you were to take a random survey of those that had long-term care plans in place against those that do not, you would most likely find health care professionals do not have any plan in place, or have an inadequate or overpriced plan through their employer or group.

Some organizations (hospitals, unions…etc.) offer a negotiated group offering for Long-term care protection to healthcare professionals but this is not always the best rate available to them. It is highly recommend that before committing to group coverage, health professionals should consult with an independent agency to explore all their options.

In addition, with the constant advances in medical science, people are surviving more conditions than in the past, but facing an increased need for ongoing care. Protecting your choices for ongoing care with long-term care plans is where you make the best decision.

There are some basic considerations when thinking about long-term care planning. Healthcare professionals are often advised about patient’s Living Wills. A living will tells which treatment you want if your life is threatened, including Dialysis and breathing machines, resuscitation if you stop breathing or if your heart stops, and/or tube feeding.

Often, patients and their families will reveal information about their intentions for long-term caregiving too. Unfortunately, many times patients and families will ask for advice because no plans have been made for how to manage a long-term care event or how to pay for it.

The government reports that 70% of people that reach age 65 will have a long-term care event during their remaining lifetime. The majority of the people needing care will be woman. Also noteworthy is that 37% of people needing long-term care services are under 65.

Nurses are a particularly vulnerable group because their job demands can create musculoskeletal problems. The American Nurses Association published a report in 2011 that showed 42% of nurses surveyed had been injured on the job at least once in the last 12 months.

Healthcare professionals are often motivated to pursue their chosen field because of their motivation to help. That generous spirit can be a burden late in life for even the most generous.

For this reason we find that we have had a significant number of people from the healthcare field investigate Long Term Care plans and make those plans part of their safety and security. A Long Term Care plan secures their income, assets and futures. Take a moment today and see how simple planning for long-term care can be: fill out the form to the right for your free guide.

Is Purchasing Long Term Care Insurance Worth It?

Affordable LTCI Premiums

Katie O’ Rourke
Managing Partner

There are two main reason why so many people that are planning for their retirement years tend to ignore the need for purchasing Long Term Care Insurance. One is lack of education and the other is denial of their likely need for care.

Some facts and figures from the insurance industry and the Department of Health and Human Services can help people find out if long term care insurance is worth it and the right time to learn about options:

  • 79% of the people purchasing Long Term Care policies are between ages 45-64
  • 99% of buyers keep their policy for the rest of their life
  • 49% of people receiving long-term care do so in their own homes
  • Another 24% get funds for Assisted Living Facilities
  • Each year the percent receiving insurance funds for home care services increases
  • Only 9% of baby boomers have planned for their Long Term Care needs
  • 70% of those over the age of 65 will need long term care in their lifetime
  • 71% of the benefits are paid to females
  • 67% of unpaid caregivers are female
  • 67% of the people who plan to have a loved one provide care have not ask the loved one to take care of them when the need arises
  • The number of Americans 65 or older will double over the next 35 years

The most eye opening long-term care statistic we found is the fact that 70% of people age 65 and older will need some form of long-term care services, either in their homes, in an assisted living facility, or in an acute care facility.

So if you are asking is long-term care insurance worth it… you need to consider if you will be part of the 30% who get lucky enough with their health and genetics to not require the $2,000 to $8,000+ per month in medical expenses the other 70% find they will need.

Most people do not realize how many options they actually have available to them when it comes to long-term care insurance planning. That is why when they get the facts, as the statistics prove, 99% of buyers do keep their policies for life.

You can get the facts today with no cost and no obligation and find out if long-term care insurance is worth it to you, your family, and your future.

Contact us directly and let us help you get the facts.

Long Term Care Facts Don’t Lie

Affordable LTCI Premiums

Katie O’ Rourke
Managing Partner

Long Term Care Facts Don’t Lie … Could This One Mistake Cost You Your Retirement Savings?

You’ve worked hard all your life and now it is time to retire. You’ve got your expenses figured out and it looks like you can finally stop working and live off interest, savings, social security, and maybe even a pension. You might even choose to work a fun part time job to stay in the mix and enjoy life a bit.

Then it happens… An unforeseen health event takes place like cancer, stroke, heart disease, or some other debilitating event.

 Luckily, you got insurance to help cover most of the medical bills, but you find out it will not be enough because this event is going to require a long-term care treatment plan that normal insurance or Medicare does not cover.

 And when 70% of those over the age of 65 will need long term care in their lifetime, you wonder why you didn’t take care of this sooner. Sure, you’ve probably heard the concept of long term care insurance, but like most other people you didn’t believe you would need it, or you simply didn’t get the right information about it.

 Did you know that 79% of the people purchasing Long Term Care policies are between ages 45-64, but only 9% of baby boomers have planned for their Long Term Care needs? When someone is unprepared for the time, cost, and emotional commitment required of family to have to take care of you, retirement doesn’t look as fun as you thought.

 And because only 9% of boomers even planned for this, 67% of the people who plan to have a loved one provide care have not asked the loved one to take care of them when the need arises. This is going to create stress among the family no matter what because most long-term care events are not a quick 30-day recovery period, they can last for 5 to 10 years, or longer in some cases. And, when long term care costs can run between $2,000 to $8,000+ per month, this can wipe out most retirement accounts efficiently.

 We know the thought of having to buy another insurance policy does not sound like a fun thing to do. But, you have so many options you may not even be aware of right now. For example, if you are in the 30% of people that enjoy health during retirement, you might be eligible for a return of premium plan where if you do not use it, you get your money back.

 Regardless of return of premium options, the fact is 99% of buyers keep their policy for the rest of their life because they know the peace of mind it provides when the unexpected happens.

 We know you want to have a fulfilling retirement full of joy and love, we also know that you do not want to become a burden or cause any strain on those that care about you most.

 That is why you can get all the facts about long-term care today when you speak to our highly trained staff and learn about what options are available to you now.

 Contact us today and get the facts about long-term care planning for retirement and you.