Americans are living longer, which is generally good news. The average life span of the ancient Greeks was about 18 years. The average lifespan of an American male is now around 75 years and for females even longer. Advances in medicine and technology as well as a better understanding of how to live a healthy life are allowing us to enjoy not only our grandchildren, but our great-great grandchildren as well. Living longer comes at a cost, though. No one has yet figured out how to stop the natural aging process, meaning that we typically need significantly more help taking care of daily needs and staying healthy as we age. For many, this means that we will need long-term care at some point. Now is the time to consider purchasing a long-term care insurance, or LTCI, policy.
An LTCI policy works in much the same way as any other insurance policy. When the policy holder reaches a point at which long-term care is required, the policy coverage will take effect and cover most of the costs associated with the care. Considering the fact that long-term care costs can run upwards of $100,000 a year, an LTCI policy can be a lifesaver from a financial perspective.
If you decide to purchase an LTCI policy, do your homework before you buy. As with other types of insurance, there are many choices and considerations. Make sure that you fully understand what coverage you are purchasing and what conditions must be met before the coverage will take effect. Research the company as well to make sure it is financially sound. Finally, sit down with your estate planning attorney with any questions or concerns that you have before you commit to purchasing the policy.