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What is long-term care insurance?

For many New York residents, one of the most complicated aspects of planning for the future relates to health care. Part of your estate planning may include creating a health care advance directive and/or a living will to state your preferences for medical treatment. Another essential part of planning ahead includes figuring out how to cover health care expenses. One option is investing in long-term care insurance, which may help offset the cost of extended care.

While traditional health insurance generally covers medical treatments and medications, it may not pay for assistance with bathing, dressing and other daily activities. If you end up needing some of these personal services from a home health care worker or a caregiver in an assisted living or nursing home, you may have to pay for them yourself. Some experts recommend buying long-term care insurance to help protect retirement savings if you get an injury or illness that requires long-term care.

Unlike traditional health insurance or workers' compensation, long-term care insurance is not something most employers offer as part of a benefits package. Generally, you must pay for a policy yourself. According to the U.S. Administration for Community Living, there are several things that may affect the cost of a long-term care policy. Your age and the length of the policy are two factors that may determine how much your premiums cost. Some providers may also place limits on the amount of coverage or raise the cost of premiums based on inflation. Additionally, you may not be eligible for this type of insurance if you have existing health conditions and/or already receive some long-term care services.

This general information on long-term care insurance is intended for educational purposes and should not be interpreted as legal advice.

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  • Walter J. Roesch IV
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