Advice & Features Articles

Life Insurance While You’re Still Living

 

Helping to Cover Your Long-Term Care

by Alicia Wanek

If you’ve ever looked into the cost of assisted-living or a long-term care facility, you know that Halloween pales in comparison.  According to attorney Colin Smith, “Long term care facilities in the metroplex can cost over $6,500 per month. The prices increase if the patient needs memory care.”  That’s frightening!

You don’t have to go running in fear.  Fortunately, there are some options available through a traditional long-term care insurance policy or, more recently, a guaranteed universal life policy with a long-term care rider that can provide care benefits as you get older.  It may be that you’re looking for options for your aging parents, but it’s never too early to look into these options for yourself.

Chuck Cowell, Dallas Market Chairman of Guaranty Bank & Trust, has been experiencing this first-hand as he looks at the options for his own father.  He says, “…in most family scenarios the availability of sufficient resources necessary to adequately care for an aging family member will not match up with the actual costs incurred in today’s health care environment, particularly in a scenario where the family member requires care of an extended nature.  Even families with above average resources will see a rapid depletion of their hard-earned assets when dealing with long-term care requirements.”  That can be sobering, but he has also seen that “…an investment in a quality long-term care product today will greatly assist with future challenges and tough decisions which lie ahead.”

Bobby Davidson, local, independent insurance agent, calls the newer universal life policies a “fantastic hybrid” between traditional term-life policies and long-term care policies.  Make sure you consult a professional like Bobby to find the right policy that offers a long-term care rider if you’re considering this for yourself or a family member.  The key is to consult a professional to make sure you get the right product.

Colin agrees.  “Review the terms of any long-term care policy closely, and be sure you understand the terms and conditions.  Some policies have maximum lifetime benefits, where they pay for a maximum dollar amount of care. Other policies have benefit periods, where they only pay benefits over a set period of time.  Some others only pay for facilities, and do not cover services in your home. You can even have an attorney review it for you.  If it doesn’t cover what you need when you need it, it may be too late to get something else.”  Kevin Margolis of SFMG Wealth Management adds, “You don’t have to necessarily insure everything.  You may just partially insure the cost.”  Whatever you can do to lessen the burden later on is beneficial.

The reality is that almost 70% of those turning 65 will need long-term care at some point in their lives.  You can make that process less scary for you and your family members by taking matters into your own hands now.

Sources:

Bobby Davidson, Davidson Insurance Services

bobby@davidsonservices.com | 972.980.4884

Colin Smith, Colin Smith Law

Colin@colinsmithlaw.com | 972.773.9095

Chuck Cowell, Guaranty Bank & Trust

ccowell@gnty.com | 214.223.3581

Kevin Margolis, SFMG Wealth Management

kevin@sfmg.com | 972.960.6460

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