Long Term Care Insurance - Not Just for the Elderly

Long Term Care Insurance

When most people think of Long Term Care Insurance, their first thought is insurance for an elderly person in a nursing home. From a sales perspective, this is the number one reason why people purchase long term care insurance. However, you do not have to be elderly or be in a nursing home to use long term care benefits.

I had a client who had purchased a long term care insurance policy when he was in his early 40’s. The client was involved in serious motorcycle accident in his late 40’s. He had multiple fractures in his legs, arms, and a broken pelvis. The insured was hospitalized for multiple surgeries to treat his conditions. Once the surgeries were completed, he moved to a rehab facility to begin the long recovery process. It was in the rehab facility where he utilized his long-term care insurance benefit.

In order to qualify for long term care insurance benefits, you cannot perform (by yourself), two or more out of the following six ADL’s (activities of daily living). Here is a brief overview of the six ADL’s:

  • Bathing (ability to wash oneself, including getting in or out of the tub/shower)
  • Continence (the ability of the body to control urination or bowel movements or both)
  • Dressing (putting on and taking off all items of clothing)
  • Eating (feeding oneself)
  • Toileting (getting to and from the toilet, and performing associated personal hygiene related tasks)
  • Transferring (the ability to move in or out of a bed, chair or wheelchair)

Since the client was unable to perform some of these daily activities, he was eligible to receive long term care benefits. He was eligible for benefits for 6 months (after satisfying a 90-day elimination period). Upon leaving the facility, he was concerned he would no longer have benefits if he needed them in the future. The good news was as he did not utilize all of his benefits, he is still eligible for future benefits. His policy had a $4,000 monthly benefit amount for 4 years, which provides a total of $168,000 in long term care. His actual benefits used were $13,200. He still has $154,800 left in long term care benefits should he need them in the future.

About the author: Teri Costen has been in the life insurance business for over 20 years. She is a mother of three who enjoys working out, taking aerobic kickboxing classes, and making stained glass. Teri believes that finding the right life insurance policy helps protect your family and loved ones. You can contact Teri at 1-800-651-1953 or TCosten@Pivot.com.