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Do your financial or retirement plans include protection

against Long Term Care expenses?

 

 

If you are like most people, you have insured your health, your car, your life, and your home. You have probably worked hard to accumulate assets for your retirement years. But what if you needed Long Term Care? Long Term Care is a risk that can impact or even derail all of your carefully thought out plans. The time to start planning is now.

 

This Web site is a resource that can help you take your first step toward protecting your future. You will not only receive a thorough education about issues relating to Long Term Care, but some specifics about Long Term Care insurance as well. Simply click on any of the sections listed. This will take you to its explanation and in most cases, subsections across the top for further explanations.

 

 

 

 

Marty Puin CLTC

(216) 381-8039

 

marty@martypuinltc.com

Our Mission Statement

 

Our mission is to educate and protect Americans from the devastating costs of Long Term Care. Families do not realize how important Long Term Care planning is until they are uninsurable or actually need help with Activities of Daily Living. We don't want that to happen to you!

Our agency specializes in Long Term Care insurance and we offer the most affordable and comprehensive plans in the market place for individuals, associations, or employer groups. We can assist you in designing the proper plan for you and your family.

About Martin Puin

 

Martin B. Puin is President of Marty Puin & Associates Inc. an insurance agency that specializes in the sales and marketing of Long Term Care insurance (LTCi). Marty has appeared regularly on WKYC TV-3  in Cleveland discussing Long Term Care and the importance of Planning for it. He has contributed to stories about LTC that have been published in the Cleveland Plain Dealer, the Columbus Dispatch, the Lake County News Herald, Cleveland Crains Business and the Youngstown Vindicator. Marty has also written articles about LTCi for Brokers World Magazine, The Ohio Underwriters Magazine and Life Selling Magazine. He is on the board of Advisors of the American Association of Long Term Care insurance, a national panel that helps develops standards of professionalism for the industry.

 

Mr. Puin has testified before the Ohio Legislature on the need to provide tax incentives for Ohio citizens who purchase Long Term Care insurance. He holds the industry designation CLTC-Certified in Long Term Care. Marty teaches a continuing education class on LTCi to Ohio insurance agents and is an Ohio Partnership trainer. He has taught legal continuing education to Ohio attorneys, CPA’s, nurses  and social workers.

 

Marty Puin & Associates is the agency of record for Long Term Care insurance sales for AAA Auto Clubs in Ohio. In past years Prudential and Met Life have partnered with Marty to help their agents and brokers understand and market Long Term Care insurance . He has given over 600 career presentations on the topic of Long Term Care to various groups where he always mentions his father Nick, a WWII Marine Veteran who was in a nursing home for many years before he died in 2010.

 

 A graduate of the University of Dayton, Marty lives in Lyndhurst Ohio where he served on the City Council for 26 years.

 

 

 

 

 

2014 AAA Schedule

 All Workshops are located in the AAA Office listed below:

 

 

Thurs   Jan 23              7:00 PM          Worthington AAA Office

 

Tues     Feb 25             7:00 PM          Midway AAA Office

 

Tues     March 18         7:00 PM          Westlake AAA  Office

 

Thurs   March 20         7:00 PM          Worthington AAA Office

 

Tues     April 1             7:00 PM          Canton AAA Office

 

Tues     April 22           7:00 PM          Independence AAA Office

 

Tues     May 13            7:00 PM          Lake Co AAA Office

 

Thurs   May 22            7:00 PM          Worthington AAA Office

 

Tues     June 17            7:00 PM          Mahoning Co AAA Office

 

Tues     July 8               7:00 PM          Canton AAA Office

 

Tues     July 15             7:00 PM          Lyndhurst AAA Office

 

Tues     Aug 19            7:00 PM          Norwalk AAA Office

 

Tues     Sept 16            7:00 PM          Strongsville AAA Office

 

Tues     Sept 23            7:00 PM          Worthington AAA Office

 

Tues     Oct 21             7:00 PM          Westlake AAA Office

 

Tues     Nov 18            7:00 PM          Solon AAA Office

 

Thurs   Nov 20            7:00 PM          Worthington AAA Office

 

Tues     Dec 9               7:00 PM          Independence AAA Office

 

 

To register for one of the Workshops

listed above please call (216) 381-8049

 

To register online please email us your name and contact phone number including the area code and the workshop date you want to attend. Please indicate how many people will be attending. We will call you back to confirm your reservation. Our email address is: marty@martypuinltc.com

 

*People over age 50 are encouraged to attend and may bring one guest. Reservations are necessary and seats are on a first come first serve basis. No purchase required.

Click Text to open links, click text again to retract

 

Note: The underlined links will take you to a third-party site

  • Types of LTC

    Types of Long Term Care

     

    Long Term Care can be received in a variety of settings. The setting is usually determined by the support system (your family, attending physician, or someone qualified to develop a plan of care) you have and the reason that you need Long Term Care. Some needs can easily be taken care of at home, while others would be better cared for in a nursing home.

    Skilled nursing facilities are usually comprised of two separate components. The first component is a unit that provides skilled nursing care that may be covered by Medicare (if the care meets the criteria that Medicare sets forth). The rest of the facility provides non-skilled (or custodial) care. The goal of the “Medicare” section of the skilled nursing facility is to provide services needed to rehabilitate the patient so they can return home. However, many times patients are unable to return home and are moved over to the non-skilled or custodial section of the facility. Usually in these cases the patient may not have any support services or family in the community that would allow them to leave the facility.

     

    Example:

    Mary Ann had a stroke a year ago. Immediately after her stroke she was admitted to a skilled nursing facility in the Medicare section and received rehabilitative therapy on a daily basis. After about 45 days, her therapists determined that she was not getting better and would need help with her activities of daily living for the rest of her life. Because she did not have anyone to take care of her at home, she was transferred to the non-skilled wing of the skilled nursing facility where she will live from now on.

     

    Home care is generally considered appropriate at the custodial and non-skilled care levels. Skilled care can be provided in the home, however it can be very expensive. Home care could consist of a weekly visit by a homemaker who performs housekeeping chores, a personal care attendant that provides assistance with bathing and dressing, or it may be a daily visit by a home health registered nurse or therapist.

     

    Example:

    Verna was diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease two years ago. Now she is unable to walk without assistance. She cannot bathe or dress herself. Her daughter, Shirley, is currently helping her with these needs. Her daughter has to go back to work in order to save money for her two children who will be going to college in the next two years. Verna is now going to have to tap into her life savings and pay for a caregiver to come in and help her, so that she can stay at home.

     

    Assisted-care living facilities,otherwise known as assisted living facilities (or ALF’s), may also be referred to as residential care facilities for the elderly (In California, they are referred to as Residential Care Facilities). These facilities provide non-skilled care for people who need help with their Activities of Daily Living but can also provide a lot of their own care and get through a daily routine with minimal assistance. Usually, skilled care is not provided in assisted living facilities.

     

    These facilities are an excellent alternative to a nursing home. The residents may live in individual apartments that they can furnish and personalize to make it seem more like home. Meals are usually provided in a community dining room and there are lots of activities and social events to attend. You can find these facilities as part of a larger independent retirement community, or as a stand alone facility that only offers assisted living. There are also small board and care homes that care for anywhere from 3-10 people. These are homes that have been converted to a board and care.

     

    Example:

    Sara was 87 years old and living in her own home. She was not getting out of the house and not socializing with anybody. Her daughter, Joan, arranged to have her mother move to an Assisted Living Facility after she realized that she was forgetting to take her medications and was not able to handle her own hygiene issues. She didn’t need skilled nursing care, but she did need help with her activities of daily living. Now Joan will not worry as much since there will be caregivers ensuring her mother gets her medications and assistance with her personal hygiene. Her mother will be able to participate in the weekly activities so she will remain active socially.

     

    Adult day care, is a community-based service that was developed to help keep people out of nursing homes and in their homes. Adult day care facilities offer custodial care during the weekdays (some provide weekend service). This care can be provided to people who need minimal assistance and have moderate impairments. Patients with Alzheimer’s or senile dementia are ideal candidates for this program.

     

    Adult day care centers offer a form of support for those who live in their own homes, or even with their children. Adult day care centers offer family members who are providing care the much needed break during the day to continue to live their lives and provide care for their loved ones.

     

    Example:

    Lyle lives with his daughter, Sandy. Sandy works full time. Lately, she has noticed that Lyle has been forgetting to prepare and eat his meals during the day. One day she was called at work by a neighbor who found him wandering down the street. Sandy wants to take care of her father after work and on the weekends, but she needs help during the day. An adult day care would provide her with the solution she is looking for.

     

    Contact us to find out more about the types of Long Term Care and how to create a way to pay for it.

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • Facilities

    There are a number of facility settings where Long Term Care services can be provided. Some of the most common options are discussed below.

     

    Nursing homes or skilled nursing facilities (SNF’s) are residential homes for those who require constant nursing care or have significant deficiencies with Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s). Residents can be any age group as long as they require this type of care. They can be there to receive different kinds of care including physical, occupational, and other rehabilitative therapies.

    Types of services provided in nursing homes include services of nurses (or nursing assistants/aides), therapists (speech, occupational, etc.), social workers, etc. Most care in nursing facilities is provided by certified nursing assistants, not by skilled personnel.

     

    Nursing facilities that participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs are subject to federal requirements regarding staffing and quality of care for residents.

     

    Assisted living Facilities (ALF’s) provide supervision or assistance with ADL’s. They also provide coordination of services by outside health care providers. Their main goal is to monitor resident activities to help to ensure the resident’s health, safety, and well-being. They do this through supervision of medication or personal care services provided by a trained staff person. These facilities are perfect for those who cannot live independently in a private residence, but who do not require the 24-hour care provided in nursing homes. This type of facility is very good for socialization as well since usually meals are served in a dining room.

     

    Board and Care Homes are housing facilities for seniors or those with disabilities who live in a group situation and get assistance with personal care and ADL’s. Generally speaking, a Board and Care facility is the best option when 24-hour, non-medical supervision is needed for a person because of the personalized attention and sometimes small size.

     

    Board and Care homes were the first recognized form of assisted living facilities, and are now regulated by government agencies. However, many are the smaller “mom and pop” type places and run without licenses.  If someone is considering this type of care facility, licensure status should be confirmed with the appropriate licensing office.  Board and Care homes can be up to 6 residents in a typical single family home, or may be a large building similar to an apartment building with over 100 residents.  Meals are usually provided no matter how many residents live there.

     

    Please contact us to talk about how you can have more choices for your Long Term Care if you should need it.

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • LTC Frequently Asked Questions

    LTC Insurance Frequently Asked Questions

     

    Q: What is Long Term Care?

    A: Long Term Care is a variety of services that includes medical and non-medical care for people who have a chronic illness or disability. Long Term Care helps meet health or personal needs. Most Long Term Care is to assist people with support services such as Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s) like dressing, bathing, and using the bathroom.

     

    Q: Where do people receive Long Term Care?

    A: Long Term Care can be provided in many different settings. Most types of care are provided at the home of the person receiving care or in a community setting such as an adult day care center. Once someone is unable to receive care at home anymore, they might move to an assisted living home, an Alzheimer’s facility or a skilled nursing home.

     

    Q: Who needs Long Term Care?

    A: If you are under 65, there is a chance you will need Long Term Care. Forty percent of the 12 million Americans receiving Long Term Care are between the ages of 18 and 64. For those over 65, the likelihood that you will need some type of custodial care rises to 60%. It is estimated that people over 65 face a 40% lifetime risk of eventually needing skilled nursing home care of some duration.

    Source: National Clearinghouse for Long Term Care.

     

    Q: How much does Long Term Care cost?

    A: The average cost for Long Term Care varies depending on the type of care and the geographical area. The national average for a private room in a nursing home is $74,460. For a home health aide, the average cost is $19 per hour.

    Source: John Hancock, Cost Of Care Survey.

     

    Q: Who pays for Long Term Care services?

    A: You do. Health insurance, Medicare and Medicare supplements do not pay for Long Term Care services. They are designed to pay for short-term skilled rehabilitation services only. Many people think their disability insurance pays but disability insurance provides income replacement only. It will not actually cover any cost of care.

     

    Q: Will Medicare cover my LongTerm Care?

    A: Medicare and Medicare Supplemental plans cover Long Term Care to a limited extent. They only pay for skilled medical rehabilitation in a nursing home over a limited period of time, typically three weeks to a month, after a hospital stay. They do not cover custodial or intermediate care in nursing facilities.

     

    Q: Will Medicaid cover Long Term Care?

    A: Medicaid is a state/federal welfare program that provides benefits covering nursing home care and limited home care only after you have spent down (depleted) the specified amount of your personal assets. To qualify for Medicaid, you must have:

    •Depleted most of your assets

    •Directed most of your income toward your care and;

    •Require nursing home level services

     

    Q: Who is Long Term Care insurance for?

    A: All adults should consider purchasing Long Term Care insurance. The need for Long Term Care services can happen anytime due to an illness or accident. As we age, the risk becomes higher that we will need this type of care. The younger you are, the less expensive it will be, and the better chance of qualifying you will have.

     

    Q: What exactly does Long Term Care insurance cover?

    A: It all depends on the type of plan you choose to purchase, but Long Term Care insurance covers skilled and custodial services in a variety of settings, including in-home skilled and custodial care, adult day care, assisted living facilities, nursing home care and Alzheimer’s centers.

     

    Q: How do I qualify for Long Term Care insurance?

    A: Long Term Care insurance is underwritten according to your medical history and current health status. When you apply, you must also be able to perform all of your (ADL’s including bathing, dressing, eating, toileting and transferring.

     

    Q: If I move, will my policy move with me?

    A: Yes, most policies have what is called “portability,” which means they can be used anywhere within the U.S. Some carriers have policies that will even cover benefits outside of the U.S.

     

     

    Please contact us with your questions about Long Term Care!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • LTC Mistakes

    Mistakes To Avoid When Considering Long Term Care

     

    Thinking about your Long Term Care planning can be overwhelming but there are a few things that might help. Trying to avoid the mistakes many people tend to make will help things feel a lot less complicated!

     

    1. The “it won’t happen to me” or “I still have plenty of time” attitude!

    No one wants to believe or expect they may need LongTerm Care in the future, no matter how far away. But, the risk is a reality. The only time that’s too late to consider LongTerm Care protection is once you need it. Don’t wait until that time to decide to plan for your future.

     

    2. Believing someone else will pay for your Long Term Care.

    Government programs generally do not pay for Long Term Care, and the ones that do, pay a very limited amount. So, it is YOUR responsibility to plan and protect yourself.

     

    3. Buying Long Term Care insurance from an uneducated agent.

    This is a big purchase, so you want someone who knows the ins and outs to guide you through the process. Find someone who is knowledgeable in the field, can shop around to get you the best coverage for the best price, and who can explain everything to you along the way.

     

     

    If you want to avoid the common mistakes of  Long Term Care planning, please contact us so we can help you. After all, if you are even thinking about it, you are on the right track. Let us help keep you there!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • LTCi Premiums

    How To Save Money On Long Term Care

     

    Insurance Premiums

    The typical response from those considering Long Term Care insurance is that it’s “too expensive.” Although Long Term Care insurance policies usually cost between $1,000 and $3,000 per year, having to pay for care out of pocket is more costly!

     

    There are a few ways you can save on Long Term Care insurance premiums without sacrificing too much.

     

    1. Buy Young

    Because premiums are age based, the younger you are, the less they will be. It’s that simple!

     

    2. Look for Discounts

    Many different types of discounts apply to Long Term Care insurance policies, which can help you save a lot on premiums if you qualify.

    •Spousal or family discounts

    •Preferred discounts

    •Group discounts

    •Employer discounts

     

    3. Consider Co-Insurance

    If you choose to co-insure part of the cost of your Long Term Care, you can significantly reduce your premiums. For example, if you lower your daily benefit by 30% and pay the rest out of pocket, you will be able to reduce your annual premium by that same amount.

     

    4. Pay Premiums Annually

    You can save approximately 8% a year by making an annual lump sum payment each year on your policy’s anniversary date. The carrier will send you a reminder each year so you don’t forget!

     

     

    If you would like to learn more about how to save premiums on your long-term care insurance, please contact us.

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • LTCi Cost

    The Cost of LTC Insurance

     

    Long Term Care insurance premiums are based on your age at the time you apply for coverage, so the younger you are, the less premium you will pay.

     

    There are other factors that affect premium as well and some of the factors vary by company, so always check with an agent that specializes in Long Term Care insurance.

     

     

    Other Factors That Affect LTCi Premiums:

    •Your health at the time you apply

    •The length of your benefit period

    •The policy’s features, benefits and options

    •Discounts you may be eligible for

    •Carrier you choose

     

    It is important to point out that despite Long Term Care insurance seeming expensive, the alternative (having no Long Term Care insurance) is much more costly! Considering the cost of Long Term Care today - a single year of needing care would have paid for many years of long-term care insurance premiums!

     

     

    Contact us to find out how affordable your own LTC policy would be!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • Qualifying

    Qualifying For Long Term Care Insurance

     

    The state of your health is the most important factor in determining if you can qualify for long-term care insurance.

     

    How Will Your Health Affect Your Insurability?

    Long Term Care insurance companies underwrite their coverage, which means they will look at your health and health history before they make a decision if they will issue your policy and at what premium rate.

     

    If you're in great health, don't use tobacco products and don’t take any medications, then carriers will be quick to accept you because you will be a minimal risk for them. However, certain health conditions could prevent you from qualifying for Long Term Care insurance. Each carrier sets their own health qualifications and they change with time.

    LTC Insurance Approval Process

    In most cases you do not need to take a physical to apply for Long Term Care coverage. Your eligibility is based on your answers to the application questions, a review of your medical records (if requested) and, in some cases, a face-to-face assessment, or telephone interview with a nurse.

     

    The approval process typically takes four to six weeks. By law, every policy comes with a 30-day right to review, or “buyer’s remorse” clause. If you change your mind, you can receive a complete refund by simply returning your policy during the free-look period.

    You have nothing to lose by applying to see if you qualify.

     

     

     

    Contact us to find out if you qualify for Long Term Care insurance. There is absolutely no obligation!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • Employers LTCi

    Employers

     

     

    When one of your employees needs Long Term Care, or must provide Long Term Care for someone at home, it may put your business at risk because it can have a great impact on your bottom line. You may not notice the cost immediately, but over time it may really add up.

     

    If an employee is providing care for someone at home it is almost as if they have another full-time job. It may affect your business in the following ways:

    •Decline in productivity

    •Decreased willingness to relocate or travel for work

    •Not able to work full-time or must resign

    •Motivation and morale are compromised

    •Interruptions during the day to handle phone calls or emergencies

    •Being absent more often

    •Increased stress which could result in health-related problems and further absence from work

    •Replacement costs if/when employee needs to finally resign

     

    Long Term Care insurance may be one of the newest and fastest growing employee benefits. There are tax incentives to employers for purchasing Long Term Care insurance on behalf of their employees. Employers can pay for all the coverage, part of the coverage, or have employees pay all the cost. Typically employers are willing to fund part of the plan and then allow the employees to purchase additional coverage.

     

    The following will give you an idea of why it might be smart for you to consider this for your company.

     

    Tax Benefits For Employers

    Recent healthcare legislation makes qualified LTC insurance policies more tax advantageous for both employers and employees. Employers that pay for Long Term Care insurance may be eligible for favorable tax treatment. However, the exact tax consequences vary depending on the structure of the business (example: sole proprietor, partnership, LLC, C-Corporation, etc.).

    •Employer-paid LTC premiums for employee, spouse, and retiree coverage may be deducted as a business expense

    •Employers can cover defined classes of workers, making it possible to offer the benefit to only higher-paid employees, such as an executive carve-out

    •Employees with medical and dental expenses exceeding 7.5% of adjusted gross income may be able to also deduct eligible LTC premiums they pay

    •Premiums are not classified as taxable income to employees

    •Benefits are not considered taxable income to the insureds and their families (even if the employer paid the premium)

    •Benefits are 100% tax-free to the employees whether the employee or the employer pays the premium

    •Premiums currently cannot be included in a Section 125 "cafeteria" plan

     

    Advantages For Employees

    When an employer offers long-term care insurance to their employees it helps provide the following benefits:

    •Financial security, responsibility and freedom

    •Preserve retirement accounts and savings

    •Ability to keep job

    •Employer-paid premiums not taxable as income

    •Employee-paid premiums may be deductible as a medical expense

    •Long-term care benefits are not taxable

    •The coverage is fully portable

    •Ability to receive high quality care for themselves and their families

     

    Contact us to learn how to protect your business from the cost of Long Term Care.

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • Do You Need LTCi

    Determining Your Need For Long Term Care insurance

     

    Determining if you need Long Term Care insurance is not as complicated as it might seem, or as some might make it seem.

     

    Below, we have provided you with enough information for you to determine if it a good option for you to consider.

     

    Longevity and Lifestyles Changes

    •Because of many advances in our society, including better public health strategies, safety technology (car safety mechanisms, bicycle helmets, etc.), scientific and surgical technologies and medications, most of us are likely to live longer than previously predicted.

    •We now live in a time when more people work outside of the home. Adult children often live far away from their parents, have full-time careers and are raising their own families. This makes the family unit “spread thinner” than before and can leave less support for those needing care.

     

    Consequences Of Extended Life Expectancies

     •Although we are generally living longer, that does not necessarily mean we are healthy and able to get around on our own.

    •Longer lives often mean more dependency at some point. The longer we live, the greater the chance that we will need assistance with Activities of Daily Living (ADL’s), or custodial care. ADL’s are bathing, dressing, continence, eating, toileting and transferring (getting to and from the bed to the chair, chair to the toilet, etc.).

    •Currently, family members (usually the women of the household) are burdened with providing the majority of this daily assistance to loved ones needing help with their ADL’s. This often takes place in the home and can continue for many years.

     

    Impact on Loved Ones

    People who are burdened with such daily responsibilities consistently report high levels of physical, emotional and mental stress. Depression among caregivers is common. Many of them have to take time way from work, suffer from exhaustion, and experience financial hardship.

     

    Costs of Long Term Care Services

    The best approach to providing Long Term Care services is to hire professionals to help with the ADL’s. This can take place in the home, at an assisted living facility or a nursing home. However, this approach can be very expensive to pay for out of pocket.

     

    Depending upon the person’s needs, the cost for home care services can be astronomical. Assisted living facilities range between $25,000 and $45,000 a year, and the average cost for just one year in a nursing home can be more than $75,000. These costs are going to continue to increase.

     

    Who Will Pay For This Care?

    Because traditional insurance plans like your health insurance, Medicare and Medicare supplements don’t pay for the ongoing custodial care, you will end up paying out of pocket for this care if you don’t have Long Term Care insurance. Your other types of insurance only pay for skilled medical services and short-term skilled rehab services; not custodial Long Term Care services.

     

    If you cannot pay out of pocket and don’t have Long Term Care insurance, you may be forced to become dependant on the state/federal welfare program called Medicaid. It is very tough to qualify for and primarily pays for nursing home care only.

     

    Protecting Yourself and Your Family

    •Long Term Care insurance is the only insurance product specifically designed to help protect you and your family from the financial, physical and emotional impoverishment associated with Long Term Care needs.

    •Today’s comprehensive policies pay for a wide range of caregiving services in most settings: at your own home, adult day care centers, hospice, assisted living facilities, Alzheimer’s centers and nursing homes.

     

    Now Is The Time To Consider Long Term Care insurance

    •Qualifying for coverage and the premiums you pay are directly linked to your health and your age at the time you apply for coverage. So, it’s best to look into this option now or you may run the risk of not being able to qualify or having unaffordable premiums.

     

    Please contact us to get a quote or talk to us about determining if Long Term Care insurance is right for you!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • LTCi Discounts

    Discounts

     

    What Premium Discounts Are Available?

    Long Term Care insurance companies are able to offer several choices of premium discounts for couples and partners, and even extend these discounts to people living in the same house such as siblings when they both apply for coverage. In addition to those types of discounts, incentives are given for preferred health, families, loyalty, association and worksite.

     

    Most Long Term Care insurance companies offer married or couple discounts to gay and lesbian couples that live together, even if they are not married.  The typical Long Term Care insurance couple and partner discounts can range from 10% to as much as 50% depending on the specific company.

     

    Preferred or good health discounts are given to Long Term Care insurance policy holders who have above average health.  These preferred health discounts could be significant, ranging from 10-20% off the entire Long Term Care insurance premium. Each Long Term Care insurance company may have different preferred health criteria, which an applicant must meet in order to qualify.

     

    Family discount means when the insured and at least two other family members own separate individual Long Term Care insurance policies. Each can receive a discount of about 5%. Not all carriers offer this discount.

     

    An insurance company may offer loyalty discounts to their current policyholders (if they have their homeowner’s insurance with that company, for example) as an added benefit because the insured has done business with them before. These discounts can begin at 5%.

     

    You can save 5% to 10% if you are an active member of an association group. These policies are generally called “multi-life” and are offered to the entire membership in the organization.

     

    Many carriers offer a 5% to 10% discount if the insurance plan is offered at your place of work with payroll deduction for ease of premium payments. The plans are called “true group” and cover many employees and family members.

     

    The way the premiums are paid to the insurance company will also determine if there is a discount for the payments made on an annual basis as opposed to monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual. One annual premium paid is the lowest cost for administration.

     

    The premium savings on your Long Term Care insurance policy can be very significant so call us to find out what discounts you qualify for!

     

    This web site may contain concepts that have legal, accounting and tax implications. It is not intended to provide legal, accounting or tax advice. You may wish to consult a competent attorney, tax advisor, or accountant. PLEASE NOTE: If there are links on this page they are provided strictly as a courtesy and the pages referenced are maintained by external sources. There is not guaranteed as to the accuracy of the information contained in the web sites you are linking to.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

  • Age to Buy LTCi

     

    When To Buy Long Term Care Insurance

     

    Think about people you know who have been in good health until a major accident or the sudden onset of an illness caused them to require substantial assistance from another person. These can include boating or auto accidents, sports accidents such as a fall during skiing, onset of Multiple Sclerosis, Parkinson’s, a stroke or various other conditions.

     

    All of these could cause a person to need long term care. With the medical advances today people are living longer lives but sometimes with chronic health problems. The sooner you buy insurance, the better, because once you need it, it’s too late!

     

    Three Important Reasons Not To Wait

    1.The longer you wait, the greater your chances of becoming uninsurable due to an illness or other condition. Your eligibility is based on your physical health and mental acuity at the time of application, which generally speaking, is better when you are younger.

     

     

    2.Your long term care insurance premiums are based on your age at the time of application. The sooner you apply, the easier it will be to get coverage and the less expensive it will be.

     

     

    3.Once you're approved, your rate does not increase as you age or if your health deteriorates. An insurance company may increase premiums on an entire class basis - not just for your policy.

     

    Copyright © 2009

     

     

     

     

  • CLASS ACT

    Obama Administration Kills CLASS ACT

     

      http://www.cnn.com/2011/10/14/politics/health-care-program

     

     

     

    To: Secretary Sebelius

     

    From: Kathy Greenlee, CLASS Administrator

     

    Re: Memorandum on the CLASS Program

     

    Date: 14 October 2011

     

    The purpose of this memorandum is to transmit the attached comprehensive report written jointly by the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports (CLASS) Office, the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation, and the Office of General Counsel documenting policy, marketing, and legal analyses conducted on the CLASS Act. I have also included my recommendation as to how the Department should proceed with its responsibilities under the CLASS Act.

     

    Background

     

    The CLASS Act establishes a voluntary insurance program for American workers to help pay for long-term care services and supports that they may need in the future. The program seeks to help enrollees live independently in the community. By law, CLASS benefits must be funded entirely through enrollee premiums without any taxpayer subsidy, and requires that the program be solvent over a 75-year period.

     

    There is a crucial need to find ways to help Americans prepare for their long-term care needs. Almost seven out of ten people turning age 65 today will experience, at some point in their lives, functional disability and need some paid or unpaid help with basic daily living activities. While most people who need long-term care are in their 70s and 80s, young people also can require care. Forty percent of long-term care users today are between the ages of 18 and 64. Long-term care is expensive. While costs for nursing home care can vary widely, they average about $6,500 a month, or anywhere from $70,000 to $80,000 a year. People who receive long-term care services at home spend an average of $1,800 a month. The average lifetime long-term care spending for a 65 year old is $47,000; 16 percent will spend $100,000 and 5 percent will spend $250,000. Medicare does not cover long-term care services. Since Medicaid pays only for services for people with limited financial means, individuals only qualify for Medicaid assistance after depleting all their resources.

     

    Few private mechanisms are available to help people plan ahead to pay for their future care. Long-term care insurance, by far the most popular private option available, can be costly and difficult to purchase, particularly for those with pre-existing health conditions or disabilities. Only about 2.8 percent of Americans currently have a policy. For workers who already experience a disability, the options are even more limited.2

     

    Through the CLASS Act, Congress sought to add a new option for American workers. The CLASS program’s distinguishing features include an offer of lifetime benefits, lack of underwriting, availability of a cash benefit, and the fact that the program would be administered by the federal government.

     

    As you have stated on a number of occasions, you cannot go forward with implementation of the CLASS program unless you determine that the benefit plan to be offered is actuarially solvent over the next 75 years and is consistent with the other requirements of the CLASS Act.

     

    Over the last nineteen months, the Department has conducted substantial analysis of the CLASS statute and possible implementation options for a Federal long-term care insurance program, consistent with the CLASS Act. All of us who have worked on this issue appreciate your commitment to finding options for those who cannot participate in the current market. We share your view that the current lack of alternatives available to many middle-class Americans is unacceptable, as it can force people into poverty and avoidable institutionalization.

     

    You charged the CLASS Office, ASPE, and OGC with performing a broad and thorough analysis to design attractive benefit plans and to determine if those plans met the twin tests of solvency and legality. Consulting individuals with a broad range of expertise, we worked with an in-house actuary and two outside actuarial firms. We subjected our actuarial modeling to expert review, and subjected potential benefit plans to thorough legal review.

     

    The report attached to this memorandum describes this work. The report contains the results of actuarial and policy analyses of the CLASS Act and the legal analysis of various benefit plan options. This report contains important findings that will help advance the cause of charting a path to affordable and sustainable long-term care options.

     

    Analysis

     

    In order to implement CLASS, we need to be able to identify a benefit design that is actuarially solvent (so that premiums are sufficient to fund the program given an assumed rate of participation), marketable (so that the assumed take up rate is reasonable), and consistent with the authorizing CLASS statute.

     

    The design and implementation of the CLASS program involve two areas of tremendous uncertainty. First, because there is no precedent for the CLASS program in either the private market or in other government programs, such as Social Security or Medicare, there is great uncertainty around the assumptions used in the actuarial modeling to assess solvency. Second, while the CLASS statute requires that the CLASS plan be actuarially sound, and that no taxpayer funds may be used to pay plan benefits, it is silent about what would happen if, at some future point, actuarial soundness could no longer be achieved. It is uncertain whether, if the program could no longer go forward, those holding policies could be assured of receiving the benefits they had purchased, or could transition to other long-term care insurance programs (especially 3

     

    since some might have developed medical conditions that mean they no longer can meet the underwriting requirements of private long-term care insurance). In light of these two types of uncertainty, it is critical that there be a high degree of confidence that the designated CLASS plan is fiscally sound and consistent with the statutory requirements.

     

    We developed a broad range of alternative CLASS benefit plan options and used independent actuarial models and analysis by the CLASS Office Actuary to compute premium estimates and assessments of the actuarial soundness of the plans. These analyses indicate that the premium for the Basic CLASS Benefit Plan, which is the benefit design that follows from the most natural reading of the statute, produces a benefit costing between $235 and $391 dollars a month, and may cost as much as $3,000 per month, if adverse selection is particularly serious. Moreover, the benefit in this plan, which calls for an average fifty dollar per day benefit for a beneficiary’s lifetime, diverges significantly from the design most buyers in the private market choose. Most buyers prefer higher daily benefits over a few years. The benefit package described in the CLASS Act will make it difficult to attract purchasers who could otherwise meet underwriting requirements and obtain policies in the private market. If healthy purchasers are not attracted to the CLASS benefit package, then premiums will increase, which will make it even more unattractive to purchasers who could also obtain policies in the private market. This imbalance in the beneficiary pool would cause the program to quickly collapse.

     

    We have identified potential benefit plans that could be actuarially sound and avoid the risk of adverse selection. These plans have benefit designs and premiums that appear marketable. Some of the characteristics of these plans include, for example, phased enrollment, higher earnings requirements for enrollees, and improved benefit design. All of these design options rely on the following strategies: they significantly increase the minimum earnings requirement specified in the statute, modifying it from $1,120 to at least $12,000 per year; they alter the benefit package so that it more closely resembles the typical package in the private market; and they phase enrollment in the plan, initially limiting eligibility to groups with better-than-average health risk profiles. While these benefit plan options show some promise in achieving actuarial solvency, they may be inconsistent with other provisions of the statute. There is concern regarding the legal authority for some of the plan features expected to increase solvency, and the more of those features that are incorporated into the plan, the greater the legal risk. In other words, as we take necessary steps to mitigate solvency risks, we concomitantly raise the legal risk that the plan could be found impermissible under the statute. If some of these solvency enhancements have to be changed, it is highly likely that the CLASS program could no longer continue and, as noted above, it is not clear whether the program could deliver on its commitment to those participants who had already enrolled.

     

    Recommendation

     

    For the reasons stated above, I do not see a path to move forward with CLASS at this time. I recommend that we work with Congress and stakeholders, including consumers, insurers, and 4

     

    employers, to continue exploring all of the options to address the critical long-term care needs of Americans.

     

     

     

    SUMMARY of the CLASS Act

    *May 2010

     

     

    When President Obama signed The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act into law on 3/23/10, it created a federal voluntary insurance-like Long Term Care program. Title XXXII of the public health law is now the Community Living Assistance Services and Supports, commonly referred to by the acronym CLASS.

     

    The Secretary of Health and Human Services is required to have plan details available for public comment no later than October 1, 2012. Therefore, it is unlikely that the implementation of CLASS will happen before 2013. Here is what we know from the new law:

     

    • People age 18+ will be automatically enrolled in CLASS through their employer if their employer chooses to participate in the program. Employees will have the opportunity to opt-out. Self-employed people will be eligible to enroll in CLASS.

     

    • People must be employed to be eligible to enroll in CLASS. This means that non-working people (such as early retirees, and family members of those in the program) are not eligible for the program. In addition, there is a minimum earnings threshold.

     

    • In order to be eligible for benefits, an eligible enrollee must first pay into the plan for 5 years.

     

    • The bill states that the benefit amount will be not less than an average of $50 per day, in an amount scaled to functional ability, with between 2 and 6 benefit level amounts. The average payment will be based on the projected number of beneficiaries receiving benefits at various levels.

     

    • Plan benefits will be paid in cash with no benefit period limit after the five year “vesting” period. There is no elimination period or deductible to first be satisfied. Benefits will be increased by the CPI and can be used to buy an assortment of services, including paying a family member.

     

    • The benefit triggers for CLASS may be 2 or 3 activities of daily living (ADL), or substantial cognitive impairment as determined by the Secretary of Health and Human Services.

     

    • CLASS shall be treated for purposes of the IRS code of 1986 in the same manner as a qualified long-term care insurance contract.

     

    • As enacted into law, unlike earlier versions of the bill, the statute does not mention a premium price, except to say that students and those below the poverty level will pay $5/month. The law states that no taxpayer funds can be used to pay benefits, and that premiums will be recalculated if required for program solvency. Because there is no health underwriting for the CLASS program, it is believed by many that the plan will attract much less healthy people than those who qualify for private Long Term Care insurance. If so, and no taxpayer funds can be used to pay benefits, the premiums for CLASS are likely to be significantly higher than for comparable private Long Term Care insurance.

     

    • The bill protects people age 65+ from rate hikes, though it appears that they must also be not employed and first have paid into CLASS for 20 years to get this protection.

     

    • Integration with Medicaid:

     

    • If institutionalized, the CLASS beneficiary receives 5% (five) of the cash benefit;

     

    • If receiving community-based services, the beneficiary receives 50% (fifty) percent of the cash benefit. The State receives the balance of the cash benefit. If the first available enrollment date is in 2013, those first enrollees will not be eligible for any CLASS benefits until 60 months later, or sometime in 2018. Since private Long Term Care insurance provides immediate coverage once in force, prudent planning for long term care compels all individuals who are able to purchase private Long Term Care insurance to do so as soon as possible. Even those who want to get coverage under CLASS should have private LTC insurance until their CLASS coverage has vested (5 years after purchase).

     

    *This criteria is subject to change.

     

    More on the CLASS ACT

     

     

     

     

Marty Puin & Associates Inc.

5001 Mayfield Rd. #126

Lyndhurst, Ohio 44124

(216)-381-8039 office

(216)-381-8059 fax

 

marty@martypuinltc.com