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Don't count out long-term care insurance for care planning

Long-term care insurance has gotten a bad rap lately. People claim it is too costly, and that they'll be better off relying on Medicare and retirement savings when the time comes. However, what people in East Hanover and elsewhere need to keep in mind is that Medicare will not cover everything. In fact, the median cost for stay in a nursing home in a private room is $97,255 annually. If a person is relying on Medicare and retirement savings, they may find that they quickly burn through these resources.

Plus, many people these days can count on having to pay for some sort of long-term care service during their lifetime. According to one source, a person who is of age 65 has nearly a 70 percent chance of one day requiring long-term care. Women will need this care longer than men. And, while around 30 percent of those age 65 may not need long-term care, of those who do 20 percent will need it for over five years.

So, as you can see, long-term care insurance can come in handy. And, it can be made relatively affordable. For example, some carriers offer discounts to married individuals. Sometimes this could be as much as 30 percent in savings. Other times spouses can buy a policy that allows them to share benefits. Since the price of long-term care insurance goes up the older one is, buying it sooner rather than later may be wise. Also, if a person owns a business or has a high amount of medical expenses, the premiums they pay on a long-term care insurance policy may be deducted from their taxes.

So, for many people in New Jersey, long-term care insurance may be an option worth considering when it comes to care planning. An elder law attorney can provide advice on this and other options a person may have when it comes to planning for elder care.

Source: Kiplinger, "The Ins and Outs of Buying Long-Term Care Insurance," Ken Moraif, March 9, 2018

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