Welcome from Phyllis Shelton

Thank you for stopping by my website created just for consumers who don’t have a local insurance professional to answer their questions about long-term care insurance. My commitment to you is to provide a simple explanation for whatever you ask me, and that’s why this site and my simplest book are both called The ABC’s of Long-Term Care Insurance. The subject of planning for long-term care has gotten way too complicated, and I’m here to help you sort through any confusion.

If you found me through my dear friend, Suze Orman, then we  share a connection already of knowing a truly great person with a huge heart who lives to help families go from just surviving the current economy into embracing The New Retirement.  I’m thrilled to participate in that journey with Suze to help you and your family know just how important the step of planning for long-term care is. And let me be very upfront about where I am on this topic.

Planning for long-term care is not just a good idea – it’s essential for most Americans so that families can retain INDEPENDENCE and CHOICE when care is needed.

Is long-term care insurance right for everyone? No, but you owe it to yourself and your family to find out if it’s right for you. And now you have a willing navigator…ME. If you REALLY want to know more, order a copy of my new book Protecting Your Family with Long-Term Care Insurance today!

P.S. If you are here because you saw my letter about helping people protect their retirement savings from a down market while finding a way to pay for long-term care regardless of what kind of health you are in today, you are also in the right place. Or, if you didn’t receive my letter but this thought appeals to you, send me a comment so I can get back to you on how to do that.


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    • Angie on July 1, 2021 at 2:42 pm
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    Hi there. I’m in WA state and as you probably know workers will be taxed on wages for a small LTC-type benefit from the state. My husband and I have applied for LTC. We were denied one policy and accepted for another. Our wages are high enough that it makes no sense for us to not opt out of the state plan, plus there is a better than likely chance we will not retire in WA meaning we will over pay for a benefit we cannot use.

    I am trying to decide how much coverage we need. We have been approved for a New York Life traditional $300 / 365 day / 3 year / CPI-U inflation protection. We have and will continue to save for retirement and are not concerned with our ability to supplement long-term care costs out of pocket. I want to get a policy that will allow us to opt out of the state plan, but I’m concerned we will over insure, so I’m thinking of dropping the plan to either $100 / 90 day / 2 year / shared care rider / CPI-U inflation protection or $100 / 90 day / 2 year / NO shared care rider / CPI-inflation protection.

    I will be 52 at the end of the month and my husband is 50. We are in good health overall.

    1. Angie, you will not be overinsured with the original New York Life plan but there may be something even better. I have team members who are specializing in the Washington State project. Please complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/and one of them will be with you right away.

    • Sabine on June 10, 2021 at 11:47 pm
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    Hi Phyllis,
    my employer is offering a Universal Life Insurance policy with Living Benefits for Long Term Care Expenses through Transamerica that is portable. No medical questions asked. Coverage is up to $150K for myself and up to $15K for a spouse. I do not yet have all the details as I will have an appointment next week with a representative. Enrollment period ends on June 25.

    My question is: I am more concerned about my husband than myself as he has underlying conditions and is 62 yrs old. He currently holds a Life Insurance Policy through Transamerica that we bought 30 years ago, but it does not have any LTC coverage. Is it possible to add on a LTC rider to something this old?
    If yes, what is the better way to go – new policy, old policy modification, or are both possible?

    We live in Hawaii (if that matters).

    1. Sabine, that amount of coverage is nowhere near enough to cover long-term care, especially in Hawaii. A month of home care or care in a nice assisted living facility is about $6500 today, and can easily top $13,000 a month in 15 years. You will have to ask Transamerica about adding to the old policy, but I wouldn’t be hopeful. Please go to this link for a personal, no-obligation consultation so we can thoroughly help you. https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ We may be able to help your husband as well.

    • Jim H on March 6, 2021 at 5:26 pm
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    My wife and I live in WA and will both be 51 this year. When we asked our financial advisor about LTCi, he recommended we get quotes from an insurance broker (located on the east coast, if it matters). The quotes for traditional plans (covering both of us) range from $5,750 – $9,100/year (not guaranteed rates) and hybrid plans from $9,640 – $15,800/year (guaranteed rates). I don’t know whether these prices are typical for 2021, but when I see that people in their 70s have plans for <$1,000/year, it drives home how extraordinary a deal they received (before the insurance companies realized plans were not priced appropriately). Can you provide any guidance on recent trends in premiums to help us gauge whether the fixed cost of the hybrid plans are worth the expense? Are there still year-on-year rate increases of 5-6% or have prices somewhat leveled out at this point?

    1. Hello Jim – yes, prices have leveled out for the most part with LTC insurance. On the traditional side, National Guardian Life (NGL) is a company you should be looking at with a great premium for a couple. However, NGL is bringing out a new product in the next couple of weeks that will cost more, so you should look at them now. I mention them because they don’t have older policies that were priced incorrectly. Rates are not guaranteed but less likely for large rate increases for the reason I just mentioned. The premiums you cite for hybrids are in the ballpark. Whichever way you go, make SURE to plan for inflation appropriately. I usually add $1500 to the average cost of an assisted living facility in your area from a national survey such as Genworth or Mutual of Omaha, then project it forward at 5% compound. In your case, I would project it forward 30 years. I base it on an ALF because most people are never in a nursing home and because I know it will also pay for a lot of home care. If you or your wife did need nursing home care, you would have to pay the difference. Decide at that point how much of that number you want to insure. Most plans want you to buy 3% compound, not 5% so you have to bump up the starting amount to make it come out right in the end…Maybe $300 a day or $9000 a month with 3% compound. Hope this is helpful and congratulations for planning for LTC. It is one of the most meaningful things you will ever do for your family. Phyllis Shelton

    • mary Laks on January 5, 2021 at 8:22 am
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    I have Long Term Insurance with CNA it is a group policy that I have for many years. Should I continue with them as the reviews I read are not the greatest. I am 71 years old and have this policy for 15 years
    Can you please advise.

    1. Congrats on buying LTC insurance when you were only 56 years old! CNA has been steadily improving their service. You are likely better off to keep your CNA policy since today’s policies are gender-rated, which means women pay more as more women than men have LTC claims. However, the group CNA policies usually don’t have built-in inflation coverage. If you would like a policy review, all you have to do is go to this link on my website and complete the short questionnaire. That puts you in our queue to get help from one of my amazing team. https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

    • Emily Hirn on January 1, 2021 at 11:39 am
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    I have owned a CNA Long Term Care policy since 2004. I just read a post from Suze Orman commenting that in her opinion CNA works hard to NOT pay their claims. Her post was from 2015. I am about to pay the premium now for 2021, which will be around $630/yr. I am 66 years old.
    My question to you is:
    Is this company worth continuing with? If not, do you have another recommendation, though I know it will likely be more expensive that what I have now with CNA.
    Thank you for any advice you can offer.

    Emily Hirn

    1. Hi Emily – I’m so glad you found me. YES, pay your CNA premium. CNA has greatly improved customer service since 2015. Your premium is very low and yes a new plan would cost more, especially since you are older and also because policies today are gender-rated. This means women have to pay more because they make up the majority of the claims. If you would like us to review your policy, that is a service we offer. All you have to do is go to my website and complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

    • Cheryle Lindsey on December 28, 2020 at 8:04 pm
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    I would like to purchase an insurance policy for long term care that us interest bearing.

    • Cheryle on December 11, 2020 at 9:35 am
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    Good morning!
    My friends mom has long term care that provided her with substantial money over the last 7 yrs. How can I find an interest bearing LTC plan?



    1. I think you are talking about the leverage that long-term care insurance provides Cheryle. The premium you put in is pennies on the dollar vs. the benefits you get out. One of my specialists (Honey Leveen) is trying to reach you now.

    • Bill K on September 18, 2020 at 2:16 pm
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    Hi Phyllis;
    I have a group LTC policy with CNA which I’ve had for quite a while. I have good coverage from what I’m reading and my monthly premium is only $75 which as never increased for over 10 years (I’m 55). I’ve been reading some bad things about CNA denying payments and other complaints. I work for the Federal gov’t and they do offer LTC plans. They are quite more expensive than what I’m paying now and don’t have as good benefits. However, they use companies like NY Life and Mass Mutual I believe. What you recommend I do with my CNA policy given the negative information I’ve read. Should I drop it and join one of the LTC gov’t providers?

    1. Please do not drop your CNA plan but I’m sure you need to add to it. The Federal program is underwritten by John Hancock and there are several other good companies offering LTC insurance. Your CNA premium is so low and the fact that it is a group plan tells me that you don’t have the best kind of inflation coverage. You are so young. You need meaningful inflation coverage. If you book a time with us, one of my amazing specialists can guide you into building on your CNA policy to get the coverage you need. You can book a no-obligation consultation at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

    • Samuel Frank on September 10, 2020 at 6:44 pm
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    Hi Phyllis,
    I am currently listening to Suze’s latest book. I have 2 questions:

    1) Which company would you generally prefer NY Life or Mutual of Omaha (recommended by the AVMA group health life insurance trust GHLIT for an LTCi plan ?

    2) I own a veterinary hospital and would like to offer LTCi as an employee benefit, would this be Pre- or Post tax deduction? Do you recommend this?

    Thank You Phyllis !

    1. Let me congratulate you Samuel for offering LTC insurance to your employees! That’s the time to buy it and some will have parents young enough to qualify. That’s a great thing so your employees can stay on the job instead of becoming full-time caregivers for their parents. Any premium you pay as an employer is 100% deductible for employees and spouses, just like health insurance. The exception is for you as an owner. If you are a C-Corp, the same is true. If you are an S-Corp, LLC, Partnership or sole proprietor, an age-based amount is deductible. You can find that table on my website under Laws & Regs. Even though you deduct it as an employer, the benefits are still tax-free to the employees no matter what type of corporation your business is. Whether you contribute to the premium or not, the employees pay their premium with after-tax dollars, EXCEPT they can pay the same age-based amounts pre-tax out of a Health Savings Account. Both are great companies Samuel. Mutual of Omaha just repriced their policies for new purchasers, but I think you would still find the inflation coverage less expensive on it. National Guardian Life also offers a discount for employer-sponsored programs along with options to pay the premium off in 10 years or a single pay.

    • Tracy Jones on September 3, 2020 at 5:19 pm
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    MS Shelton,
    Finally got going and applied for USAA sponsored John Hancock Hybrid life insurance with early payment LTC rider. Before signing on dotted line I would like to know if you have any knowledge and feedback as to this policy and if John Hancock has a good reputation for working with clients when they need it, making the claim. Of course value too.
    Thank you,

    1. John Hancock is a fine company. FYI, the cost of a really nice assisted living facility in 20 years in your neck of the woods is projected to be about $16,000 a month, and this amount should also pay a significant amount of home care. So make sure you are comfortable with making up the difference. If you are not, you could always add a very small traditional policy that will generate another $6,000 a month in 20 years. For example, you could buy a $3400 monthly benefit ($110 daily benefit) today with 3% compound inflation. Your John Hancock policy will pay 25 months, so you also want to be sure you are comfortable with that length of time. If you would like to add anything, please feel free to complete the short questionnaire on my website here: https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ That puts you in our queue to get help from one of my amazing team.

    • Angela Kalatzis on August 21, 2020 at 12:23 pm
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    Hi Phyllis,
    Well – as you know, you come very highly recommended! Looking for advice for my husband and I who are just turning 60 (have been been dragging our feet looking into this, for the last several years!!).We are both in good health – non smokers, fairly active, etc. Have no idea where to begin, so appreciate whatever guidance you can provide. Thanks in advance!

    1. Time to stop dragging those feet and use them to RUN toward a long-term care plan Angela! Do it before the 60th birthday too to save money. I often say money pays for a policy, but HEALTH pays for it. All you have to do is go to this link on my website and complete the short questionnaire. That puts you in our queue to get help! https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

      While you are there, you will learn a lot by watching my 17-minute video on that page. Please, please be patient with us. We have received many inquiries from Suze’s blog yesterday and I promise we will get to everyone.

      Planning for long-term care is one of the most meaningful things you will ever do for yourself and your family Angela. So glad you found me!

    • Patricia Wright on August 20, 2020 at 10:11 am
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    I would really like to get more information for Long-Term Care Insurance for me and my husband.

    1. So glad you came to us Patricia. Planning for LTC is one of the most meaningful steps you will ever take for each other and for your children or other family members who may be thinking they will be responsible for your care. Each person is different. We are a boutique, not a cookie cutter so we need to visit with you to get the information we need to customize a plan for your budget. Please complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ so we can help you right away. One of the major plans we recommend is going up Sept 1st for new policyholders, so it’s very important that you meet with us now.

    • Alice Pollard on March 30, 2020 at 5:54 pm
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    Hi Phyllis, I am listening to Suze Orman’s Ultimate Retirement Guide and of course she recommended you as the LTCi expert! I am 69 and my husband is 74. We would like to get LTCi but do not know how to do this. We are relatively healthy but my husband does receive treatment for “possibly” (Diagnosis not confirmed) Polycythemia Vera every 6 weeks or so. Are there any plans out there that might cover both of us? If not, what would be the best plan for me/ us? I appreciate your advice. Thank you!


    1. Yes I believe we can help both of you! I will reach out to you separately.

    • Michelle Corry on March 18, 2020 at 2:24 pm
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    Hi Phyllis,
    Thank you for taking the time to read and respond. Much appreciated. I was just denied LTC insurance through my employer. I have asthma, never been hospitalized, very few attacks, and use very little medication. The reason for the denial is quite vague, “Our decision was based solely on the information you provided on the application and any supplemental information you provided.” Are they obligated / required to give a definitive / specific explanation for the denial? Does this denial at all impact future applications to other LTC insurance providers?

    Thank you so much for your response.

    1. You can write a letter to the insurance company asking for the reason and they will tell you. Once you have that letter, email it to me and I may be able to help you. phyllis@GotLTCi.com

    • CHRISTINE REQUENA on June 5, 2019 at 11:07 am
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    I just purchase Lincoln Money Guard gave with 100,000 was that a good decision

    1. Thank you for your question Christine. I won’t know if it is a good decision without asking you some questions. If you would like my opinion, please reserve a time on my calendar that works for you. Phyllis Shelton’s calendar

    • Thomas Long on June 2, 2019 at 2:37 pm
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    i purchased ltc policy from cna thru my employer more than 20 years ago.i have never had to use it but cna sent me a huge rate increase, which i reduced by lowering my daily amount to $100.00 per day. i am in my seventys and the stories i read about cnatom not paying claims makes nme nervous, should i cancel this policy or what

    1. Thomas, I am so glad you found me. Please do not cancel your policy. I am happy to talk with you to make sure you know what you have. Please reserve a time with me at your convenience on my calendar here:

      Phyllis Shelton’s calendar

    • Susan M. on October 4, 2018 at 9:18 am
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    Hi Phyllis,

    I found out about you after listening to Suze Orman! I am a 55 year old widowed woman with 3 teenage children. I would like some advice on possibly purchasing LTC. My financial advisor says he doesn’t think it is something I should consider, because of the increased in premiums. I own my own home, fully fund my 401K and Roth IRA, and have other investments. While I don’t smoke, I did have lung cancer in 2013. It was found early so a portion of my lung was removed, and chemo and radiation wasn’t necessary. So far, after 5 years, I have been cancer free. With that said, I am significantly overweight. Should I consider LTC and if so, where should I possibly purchase a policy.

    1. Susan your financial advisor is wrong. It sounds like you may be able to afford a hybrid plan which will freeze your premium so you don’t have to worry about rate increases. Congratulations on being cancer free after five years – that’s awesome! There is still medical underwriting so your weight matters. Please complete the short questionnaire at so we can get back with you and help you make an informed decision. Phyllis Shelton

    • David T on April 2, 2018 at 11:40 pm
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    I am 64 and have had a LT policy with CNA for over 20 years which started as a benefit through work. Like many others, after turning 60 I get a rate increase notice of 95% to continue coverage. Just received another notice my premium was going up another 10% to 1000 every six months. This seems criminal. I realize I have options. Continue to pay, reduce my benefits or cancel my policy. Is there a door number four? I would imagine if I went out to find another policy at this point it would probably be as expensive or worse. Just seems after paying in thousands and thousands of dollars they basically have me over a barrel. I can’t believe there is no regulatory oversight of this industry. Appreciate your thoughts.

    1. I’m happy to help you. Will you please email or fax me the rate increase letter you received from CNA? Also the Schedule of Benefits from your policy. There may be a door #4. phyllis@gotltci.com or fax 615-590-0307

        • Bill Stanley on June 24, 2020 at 11:55 am
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        Hi Phyllis,
        I am in the same boat. i have been paying CNA for 15 years and my rate is going up too.
        I am age 70 now.

        Will CNA pay the claims in the future or will they weasel out and not pay them.
        How can I be sure they will pay their claims if I ever need them?
        It is too late for me to go somewhere else. Should I stop paying the policy?

        Bill Stanley

        1. You should NOT stop paying for your CNA policy Bill. You would never want to cancel it until you had something else in place. It is not too late to go into another policy if you are in good health. However, that will take careful evaluation. I’m happy to do that for you. Please email me the Schedule of Benefits if possible to phyllis@GotLTCi.com and book a time with me here: https://calendly.com/phyllis-shelton

      • Cynthia Mckeague on August 20, 2020 at 12:31 pm
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      Would you please provide your thoughts on LTCi vs a hybrid life insurance policy that allows you to withdraw funds for medical care as needed, can be left to survivors, and is tax free? I’m getting financial advice from different directions on this and feel like there’s something I’m not seeing. Appreciate any guidance. I think the premiums would be more affordable too.

      1. Hi Cynthia – the hybrid plans are very popular now as they guarantee your premium and can be paid up at some point. And, as you pointed out, there is money to leave to heirs if you don’t need much care or any care, and the benefits are tax-free. They actually can cost more because you are buying that death benefit, and with some policies, a return of premium if you change your mind. However, some have annual premiums instead of a lump sum. The only way you can find out is to meet with us and let us customize a plan for you. Please complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ so we can help you right away.

    • Terri Shippen on October 21, 2017 at 8:45 am
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    Hi Phyllis,
    Suze Orman recommends you, so that’s good enough for me! I’m a 53 yr married woman looking for LTC insurance. My husband has his through CNA but that’s not an option for me since they’re no longer selling policies (and after reading what you’ve written about them, that’s apparently a good thing.) My employer offers LTC insurance packaged with a whole life insurance policy, which isn’t what I want. I’m healthy, a non-smoker, average weight, and exercise regularly. Could you recommend a few companies to call? Thank you for your time and talents!

    1. Hi Terri – I’m so glad you found us! I would love to help you. First I need to know more about you. Will you please take a couple of minutes and complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ You will then receive an email with a link to our calendar so you can reserve a no-obligation consultation and customize a recommendation to your needs an budget. You will want to be near a computer so we can do a screen share. You will also want to watch the short video on that site if you haven’t already. Congratulations on planning for long-term care, Terri. It is SO important, especially if you have children or others who would be greatly impacted by your need for extended health care at home or in an assisted living facility. Looking forward to hearing from you! Phyllis Shelton

    • Jennifer on July 16, 2017 at 7:48 pm
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    I’m a 51 year old single female starting to look in to LTC insurance for myself. Are there any gender neutral policies available in Arizona?

    1. Yes Jennifer. Mass Mutual has a GREAT policy that is gender neutral. So is the Federal LTC Insurance Program if you are eligible for it. If you would like a no-obligation consultation with me to find out more, please complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ You will then receive an email with a link to our calendar and you can reserve a convenient time in the FIRST column (Telephone 1) for an appointment with me.

    • Mark M. on June 13, 2017 at 11:04 am
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    We are 58 years old living in Ca. and in fairly good health besides a little overweight .My wife takes medicine for thyroid and I take medicine for Gerd. We thinking about LTC policy and have narrowed it down to two companies, Mass Mutual and Mutual of Omaha for a shared policy with 3% compound. What company would you suggest? We plan to move back east upon retirement in 3-4 years to North or South Carolina. Should we wait to get a policy there?

    1. Don’t even think about waiting 3-4 years. Anything can happen that would cause one or both of you to become uninsurable. Both companies are great! Just make sure you are buying enough coverage. Please read my article here on how to establish your target and adjust it to the area of North or South Carolina to which you might move. Please feel free to share the article with your agent if you need help figuring it out. If you feel the premium is too expensive, compare the premium you would pay over the next 30 years to the benefits you will have at that time, remembering that when one of you has a claim, the premium stops. Both companies offer a joint premium waiver when one of you has a claim, but I value the survivor benefit more. Mutual of Omaha says if one of you dies after 10 years, the other one has a paid-up policy forever. Mass Mutual says if one of you dies sooner than ten years, the surviving spouse pays premium until year 10, then has a paid-up policy for life. If you still need help, feel free to sign up for a no-obligation consultation in the first column (Telephone 1) here.

    • Susan B on May 18, 2017 at 7:02 am
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    Hi Phylls,

    I’m an American citizen living outside of the United States (age 41, recently divorced mom to 2 girls). Is there any chance there’s a provider of long-term care insurance that I could look into? Is it too early for me to look into this?

    1. It is by no means too early Susan. Now is a great time to look into it, because a significant number of people who need long-term care are under 65 due to accidents, strokes, and debilitating conditions like brain tumors, MS and ALS. Normally you would have to live in the U.S. at least six months of the year, sign the application in the U.S. and have medical records furnished by a U.S. doctor. The exception would be if you live in a U.S. territory. There are policies that pay benefits internationally,as long as the claim is verified by a doctor who lives outside the U.S. but is licensed in the U.S. However, you would have to acquire the policy under the above conditions. Now, perhaps you could talk with a financial planner in the country in which you live and ask if there is a product that will accumulate a lot of cash value by the time you are in your 80s, which you could use for LTC if you need it. If you don’t need it, there would be a death benefit to go to your family. The downside of that is it doesn’t help you if you do have a younger claim. So if you plan to move back to the U.S., you can also pick up a long-term care insurance policy that will cover you in the near term.

    • laurie on April 28, 2017 at 1:35 pm
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    Hi Phyllis,
    I see that Suze Orman states that you know of a few LTC providers that accept “qualified” money transfers into LTC insurance/and/or hybrid.
    is this true? Would you let me know which companies these are.

    1. Yes Laurie – that would be OneAmerica (Asset-Care III) and Guaranty Income Life (GILICO). The GILICO product spreads the tax impact out five years and the OneAmerica Asset-Care III spreads it out 20 years. At the end of each of those terms, the LTC benefits are tax-free. If there is a claim before the term has ended, part of the benefits will be tax-free, depending on where you are on that scale. I also use Security Benefit’s Total Value Annuity, a fixed index annuity that grows the money at 4% compound annually plus index growth for up to 20 years. After the income is turned on, it can pay double up to 5 years when people need help with two daily living activities. That product is good for people who are uninsurable as the only medical question is can you do your daily living activities today?

    • Donna and Bob Olesh on September 12, 2016 at 11:18 am
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    Long-term-care insurance policyholders face sharp premium hikes_ ‘When do these increases end_ There is no ceiling’ _ Live Well Nebraska _ omaha.com.html

    1. Thank you for the opportunity to check out the two posts on Live Well Nebraska, one of which ended with the sentence “On the other hand, 48 percent of Americans will never need paid, formal long-term-care services..” I posted this comment:

      “hmmm, so the report said 48% of people won’t need care. So if you thought there’s a one in two chance that your house will burn down, how long would it take you to get homeowners insurance? Of course, that’s not the risk of a home burning, which is why homeowner’s insurance is so much less expensive than long-term care insurance. At $6000 a month or so, four years of long-term care costs much more than the average American home, and that’s today. Inflation in the next 20-30 years will make that number look small.”

    • stormy coleman on September 5, 2016 at 6:16 pm
    • Reply

    i jut saw your e-mail in an article written by Terry Savage “sticker shock for long
    term care insurance.

    Will drag out my info and may write for some advice.

    I mainly wanted to say thank you for offering your help in this complicated
    world we live in. I’m on Medicare with Humana Health. It’s been a
    nightmare. The sales rep., calling their main office for help, etc.etc.
    No one knows what’s going on. I’m going to get a new rep or change

    Enough for now. Again, thanks for offering your time.
    Ms Stormy Coleman

    1. I will be glad to help you Stormy. Email your rate increase letter to me at phyllis@gotltci.com or fax it to me at 615-590-0307. Be sure to include your phone number so I know how to contact you. If you have any problems please contact Lawrence Vivenzio on my team at lawrence@gotltci.com or call him at 888-400-1118, x120.

    • Barbara Casey on August 27, 2016 at 12:29 pm
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    I am female, 76 years old and recently widowed. My husband and I did not have ltc. His death was quick so we really didn’t need it. I am in excellent health, live in my own house and have adequate savings (annuities).

    I am going to see an advisor next week and I want to make sure I do the right thing. I know eventually I will probably need LTC, but want to be careful how I spend my $.

    Thank you.

    1. Hello Barbara, I’m so sorry for your loss. Yes, I’m happy to help you and I know your time is short. Will you please go to my “Suze” link and reserve a time to talk with me in the first column (Telephone 1)? All the times are in Central. Also if you can be near your computer, that will help so we can do a screen share if necessary. https://www.gotltci.com/ltciconsultations/suzeorman.

    • Lisha Kronmann on August 14, 2016 at 5:00 pm
    • Reply

    Hi Phyllis- My husband and I bought a joint long term care insurance policy through Genworth back in 2012. It is a policy where we pay premiums (very significant premiums- currently $16,000/yr) for 10yr, then the policy is paid in full and we no longer pay premiums. Benefits are for 10years each, and they can be shared between us. We have the inflation protection rider for 5%, and felt relatively good about our investment until today, when someone told me that Genworth has been increasing their premiums by 60%, and that they have made moves to separate their long term care insurance division from the rest of the company, presumably because they anticipate that the LTC portion may go bankrupt and they are trying to protect their other assets. At his point we are 64k in the hole, and after a google search, I see that several ratings agencies did downgrade Genworth earlier this year. We are trying to decide what to do- do you know what happens if they go belly up? I don’t want to walk away from 64k, but also don’t want to loose more if that is where things are heading. What do you advise? we could walk away and try for a different company- we are both 47 and in relatively good health. Any advise you can provide is appreciated. thanks-

    1. Hi Lisha, I’m happy to help you. I need to see exactly what you have. Will you please scan email me the Schedule of Benefits page from the front of your policy? Or if faxing is easier, our fax is 615-590-0307.

      Then will you please book a time with me in the first column (Telephone 1) so I can go over everything with you.


      Let’s not throw out the baby with the bathwater. There are alternatives. Looking forward to talking with you very soon.

      Thanks Lisha.

        • Chip Schindler on November 25, 2016 at 6:45 pm
        • Reply

        My Aunt also has Genworth LTC. What did you find out?

        Chip Schindler

        1. The capital infusion from the Chinese company that just bought Genworth’s long-term care insurance division will help their balance sheet tremendously. I can’t comment on your aunt without knowing her age, her benefits, her premium, and generally more about her. Feel free to email her information to lawrence@gotltci.com or fax to 615-590-0307 and we can give you a more definitive answer.

    • K V Lura on July 28, 2016 at 3:04 pm
    • Reply

    I am a retired federal employee. I have had Long Term Care insurance for my wife and myself through the Federal offering, LTCPartners, since it began in 2002. I am 66. my is 64. We kept our coverage unchanged (the choice, as I recall, was to that or drop inflation protection) and began paying the higher premiums (after a bit of hard thought) when the plan “changed” in 2011. Now, in 2016, they are making another round of changes due to their increasing costs and apparent actuarial errors. We are again being offered the choice to keep our coverage unchanged (keeping 5% inflation protection) but pay nearly 2.25 times the current premium; reduce to 3.9% inflation at approx. 1.7 times more cost; reduce inflation coverage to 2.2% at the old premium; or to be “bought out” for what looks to be a little less than the total of the premiums paid since we started–to be paid as a fixed amount of LTC coverage (probably less than 4 – 5 months of paid for care). My state, Minnesota, participates in an LTC Partnership, but since we bought in to LTC Partners before 2006 the plan isn’t recognized as a Partnership Plan. The increases are extreme and very difficult to consider on a retiree income. We are both still in good health. I am considering taking the “buy out” and looking for a plan which qualifies for Minnesota Partnership or dropping the inflation protection to the 2.2% level and “hanging in there”. Do you have any advice for us, including a Minnesota Partnership plan? Thank you for anything you might suggest.

    1. Please see my post about the Federal plan’s rate increase at if you haven’t yet. This will help you analyze the value of your benefits vs. the premium to make a more informed decision. You and your wife are still young so you want to be very careful about reducing the inflation benefit, especially if you have longevity or Alzheimer’s in your family history. You will see in my article that you don’t have to accept just what is offered to you in the rate increase letter. People with unlimited benefit periods may opt to reduce to a five year for example before reducing the inflation coverage. My basic formula is to find out the cost of a “country-club” assisted living facility in your area…about $5,500 a month for Minneapolis…and project that at 5% compound for at least 20 years, so about $15,000 a month. If you had to pay four years at that amount ($720,000), how would that impact your retirement? Now compare what you will pay in premium for the next 20 years to that number with the full rate increase, remembering that the premium will stop when you have a claim. Also, insurance benefits are tax-free, whereas self-insuring can mean using taxable money or selling real estate at an inopportune time. I wish the Federal program was a Partnership plan as well but the most important thing is that you have the best coverage for your premium dollar. New plans cost much more than they did even three years ago and finding a comparable plan at a lower cost would be difficult, especially when you consider the Federal program has the best home care benefits in the industry with all the informal caregiver benefits. So before you reduce benefits, figure out how much of that $15000 a month you can pay and how much you want insurance to pay. Nursing home care will cost quite a bit more if you or your wife need that as a last resort. Most people don’t so that’s why I use the nice assisted living facility as a benchmark. Home care is growing much slower so I know if the assisted living facility is fully funded, it will also cover a lot of home care.

    • M.K. on July 21, 2016 at 11:10 am
    • Reply

    I am a 44 (soon to be 45) year old woman, federal employee (professional), who signed up for federal long term care insurance (FLTCIP) when I started working for the federal government in the DC area 7.5 years ago. Recently, I received a letter from the FLTCIP (John Hancock) which said that in order to have the same coverage, my premiums will increase from $89.23 per month to $201.67 per month starting November 1, 2016. That is a large increase for me. I signed up for LTC because the premiums were affordable. Now this is clearly becoming a luxury. Since I am only about 45, should I just drop my LTC insurance, and then seek to get LTC insurance again when I am in my mid-50’s? I am in good health (according to my doctors), never married, no kids, and I try to keep in good health by going to the gym several times a week. Although I do realize that anything can happen.

    1. Yes, that is a large increase but the Federal plan was a really great deal when you bought it and still is by today’s standards. Today’s policies are gender-rated which means women pay a lot more. A single 44 year old woman today in the open market would pay between $400-$500 a month for a daily benefit of $150, 3 year benefit period and 5% compound inflation. My guess is your benefits are higher than this. If you can afford the $201.67, my advice is to accept the rate increase and be very thankful you have this coverage. If you do want to decrease your premium, I’m happy to look at your benefits and make a recommendation. Just email the Schedule of Benefits from your policy to me at phyllis@gotltci.com or fax it to 615-590-0307. Please do not cancel your policy. It is irreplaceable.

    • Curt on July 6, 2016 at 6:48 pm
    • Reply

    I am a 56 year old male in good health in Ohio. Question I have – is it better to purchase long term care policy with potential yearly rate increases or instead purchase a whole life insurance policy with long term care rider? The feature of the whole life policy is no rate increase on the LTC rider.

    What companies do you current recommend?

    1. The answer to your question depends on too many factors to really give you a “canned” answer. Planning for long-term care is something that is so individualized that to make a recommendation we need to learn a bit more about you. We can help you with both traditional long-term care and alternative LTC planning methods like the life/LTC plans you mentioned if you do not have a local processional who is knowledgeable on the topic.

      If you would like to have a free no-obligation consultation please go to https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us and complete the short questionnaire below the video. When you do, you’ll get an automatic email with a link to our calendar website so you can select a date & time for your consultation. On that website when you click on any date, you’ll see four columns. Please sign up under the first column for help with comparing alternative LTC solutions with traditional policies.

    • Mary Krost on June 22, 2016 at 4:49 pm
    • Reply

    Hi Phyllis,
    I am a 74 year old female who has had a long tern care policy with Genworth for 10 years. Recently, I was advised that my premiums will go up substantially over a three year period starting this August 2016. By 2018, I will be paying approximately $500.00 per month for my policy. I have been researching why this is happening and I have come upon a lot of rather alarming information on Genworth including class action suits against the company for manipulating their stock information, to raising the rates so high as to force seniors to drop their policies, to refusing to pay benefits to their policy holders and much more upseting information. I am concerned that this company may not even be in business 10 years from now and to continue paying on this policy would be a waste of money. To date, over ten years I have paid approximately $46,000 into this policy. I am not sure what I should do. Do you have any thoughts or information that can help me in making the right decision?
    Thank you in advance for your help
    Mary Krost

    • Patti Lieb on May 23, 2016 at 5:28 pm
    • Reply

    Hello Phyllis,
    I am 72 years old and began a LTC policy in July 1998 with CNA when I was employed at Motorola. In August I will have a total knee replacement but discovered that there is a 90-day waiting period. I thought I had $200/daily for $300,000 lifetime benefit. Now I understand that they pay a nursing home $200/day or assisted living $150. But I need the benefits as soon as I have the surgery.
    What should I do to cover these costs? I am confused and think there is a sham going on. I must pay for these costs myself but thought I was banking those costs for the past 18 years.
    I also would like to change the policy. Is there anything you might suggest?
    Many thanks!

    1. Hi Patti, glad you checked with me. Your CNA policy is long-term care insurance so it is intended for care that lasts longer than a few weeks as that is really short-term care. Medicare has 100 days possible for a rehab facility if you are in the hospital at least three days. I don’t think Medicare would approve the entire 100 days for a total knee replacement but whatever would be approved would help you. Medicare can also cover some home care visits after the rehab stay. You have excellent benefits with your CNA policy for a long-term condition. The $150 daily for an assisted living facility combined with your income would likely cover a “country club” assisted living facility, depending on where you live.Your benefits will last at least 50 months for nursing home care and more like 5.5 years if you use the entire benefit account for an assisted living facility. Plus your premium will stop when you start collecting benefits on your CNA policy. For short-term care, if you need more than what Medicare will pay, consider placing a note on your church bulletin board or local senior center for someone who can sit with you while you recover. That would be less expensive than going through a home health agency.

    • Sandy on April 29, 2016 at 9:39 pm
    • Reply

    I have a long term care policy through CNA.
    My effective date of the policy is January of 2008.
    I am 61 years old/female. The premium is $105 per month. Lifetime maximum is $560,000 and daily benefit is $140.00.
    Waiting period is 90 days. LTC benefit is 100% of eligible expense per day of NH or Alternate Care Facility and 100% of the Eligible Expense per day of Community based care not to exceed $140.00 per day.
    Caregiver training benefit $420.00
    Temporary bed =100=21 days
    Hospice= 100% of eligible expense not to exceed $140.00 per day.
    Emergency Alert system= not to exceed $140.00 per month

    I have not had to submit any claims, but I’ve read some bad reviews of where people have had difficulty when they submit claims. My own concerns about billing of premiums and poor communication have made me doubt whether I should keep this policy. Their communications are dated in one month, but I don’t receive the actual letter until a month after the letter was written. They have taken 3 premiums out of my bank in one month and took another premium payment a month early. I have been on the phone constantly trying to sort things out. I feel that if I have this much problem with the billing of premiums, I wonder what my loved ones would have to go through just trying to submit claims and receive payments.

    I don’t even know if the policy that I have is even going to make a difference down the road if I would need it.

    1. Hi Sandy – I’m glad you checked in with me. Sounds like you don’t have inflation so the benefit isn’t growing. I really need to know where you live (or where you are going to retire) plus an idea of the resources you have available to put with it to comment on whether or not it will be meaningful. Your longevity also figures into this. To answer your question specifically about claims, CNA has a new claims management team and they are in the process of bringing it all inhouse instead of having a third-party administrator pay the claims. They are very committed to excellence and making sure everything on the claims end runs smoothly. If you would like me to evaluate if this policy is enough for you, please complete the short questionnaire at and I will be happy to talk with you a little and make a recommendation. After you complete the questionnaire, you will receive an email directing you to a calendar to sign up for a no-obligation consultation. I am Column 1, so if you select a time in that column, I will be able to help you more. Thanks! Phyllis Shelton

    • Karen Guest on April 26, 2016 at 11:40 pm
    • Reply

    I am a 58 yr old widow in good health and take no medications, and have two sons, ages 20 & 18. My mother had a series of strokes and dementia and required 24 hour care at the end of her life. I currently work part time, live off of investments and have my retirement is well set up. I have additional 500k cash set aside earning next to nothing. I have no life insurance or long term care so I am considering investing 100K in a Lincoln MoneyGuard II that has reimbursement for long term care expenses through a flexible premium life insurance policy. each year the life ins premium goes down as the long care coverage goes up. Can you comment on this plan? In addition, I am considering a 200K investment in an American Pathway Fixed Annuity Plus Income plan designed to provide me with another source of income beginning at age 65. Any comment on this?
    Thank you!!

    1. Hi Karen – please go to this link and select a time that is most convenient for you in Column 1 (Telephone 1). I’m always happy to evaluate policies at no charge.
      Please have the Lincoln quote available and also the American Pathway so we can discuss them. Please be at a computer so we can do a screen share.

  1. I currently have a policy with CNA for $100 a day , $182,500 total on four year payout for a very low premium about $400 a year. I have to renew my policy soon and have checked out rates at other companies. They are very high. I am 62 years old.
    CNA has very bad reports on the internet about payouts. Do you have any advice ?

    1. Yes, your premium is very low and I urge you to keep your CNA policy. CNA has a new management team that is 100% committed to improving the service at CNA all around and to especially make sure the claims are paid timely and accurately. Your daily benefit is low compared to today’s prices but it may be enough depending on your other resources. If you would like a no-obligation consultation to see if you need additional coverage, just complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ Since most insurance companies are now gender-rating, men can buy long-term care insurance today for much less than a couple of years ago.

    • Claire Weinberg on February 21, 2016 at 12:23 am
    • Reply

    I am 74 years old and considering a partial long-term care policy of about $162,000 pool of money, with a 3 year monthly benefit of about $4500. The 2 companies I am considering, which seem the most affordable, are John Hancock and Mutual of Omaha. I can’t seem to find any information regarding the ease of claims filing with either of them. I would appreciate any information you can share about these companies in regard to the ease of claims payments or any other information you have about them.

    Thank you very much!

    1. I don’t think you can go wrong with either one of them Claire. A good place to look to see how a company is doing is in the Consumer Education Source on the NAIC website.

    • Susan on November 29, 2015 at 9:06 pm
    • Reply

    Hello–I just turned 55 a few weeks ago, and for my birthday, I decided to investigate LTC insurance. I am 55, widowed, have one daughter, am employed full time and in good health. Except that a couple of weeks ago I fell off my horse and fractured my pelvis/hip/sacrum. No surgery or other treatment than resting and walk with cane/walker and a full recovery is expected. So my question is, will this injury affect my ability to purchase LTC insurance? Will I be considered high-risk? Also, I have a history of bipolar disorder–well controlled with medication. To what extent does medical/psychiatric history affect ability to purchase and cost of LTC insurance? How extensive are the questionnaires?

    1. Thank you for your inquiry.

      The questions on long-term care insurance applications are relatively thorough. What’s even more thorough is the underwriting process and the various insurance companies’ underwriting guidelines. Each company has a comprehensive set of underwriting criteria that covers a multitude of conditions that assess an applicant’s long-term health both physically and cognitively. Some vary greatly so a condition that’s perfectly fine with one company may be uninsurable for another. The main thing to remember is that they’re not quite as concerned about what might happen tomorrow, but they’re more concerned about what might happen in 20 or 30 years, for example. That’s why some people who get preferred rates with life insurance policies may be completely uninsurable for long-term care insurance policies. It’s a morbidity consideration for long-term care (underwriting the risk or a not immediately life-treating, extended, debilitating illness) vs a mortality consideration for life insurance (the risk of death).

      So something like broken bones that have healed aren’t quite as much of a concern for long-term care. They’ll simply want to see that physical therapy is completed, that you’re released from treatment, and that no issues arise for 6-12 months after that (that length of time varies depending on the insurance company – it’s called a stability period). The other thing they’ll check for is any kind of permanent spinal issues that may be problematic down the road.

      Now something like a diagnosis of bi-polar may be well-controlled and stable today, but people with a bi-polar diagnosis are at a higher risk of developing dementia (among many other conditions) so that’s a more concerning item for long-term care underwriters. Any traditional long-term care insurance carrier does not underwrite a diagnosis of bi-polar or the use of any anti-psychotic medications such as Seroquel, Zyprexa, Abilify, Geodon, Clozaril, or Risperdal to name a few of the more popularly prescribed brand name drugs.

      What might be a better fit for your situation is a policy that combines life insurance or an annuity with long-term care benefits that has little to no medical underwriting. To develop this type of plan someone usually re-positions an asset that is moderately performing to under performing and wakes that money up to make it multi-task – grow at a higher rate, be a death benefit, be a long-term care benefit, be retirement income, or be a refund of premium at a future date. Depending on the vehicle, it may do some of or all of these things.

      Also, depending on what state in which you currently reside, you may have short-term care policies available to you which is basically long-term care insurance stuffed into a smaller box. It’s less underwriting, less premium, and less benefits.

      This is why we want to do everything we can to explain to people that only good (by some people’s standards great health) physical and cognitive health can buy you long-term care insurance. For some 55 years old makes perfect sense, but for many others that may be far too late. When you fell off of that horse, you very well may have been injured more severely. That can happen to any 20 year old at any time as well. When people ask me what age is the right age to buy, the answer is when you’re healthy enough to apply and it’s affordable to you.

      I hope you found this response helpful and would like to thank you again for your inquiry because this response may help others as well.

      If you would like to look further into some of the options that may be available for your particular situation (life/ltc, annuity/ltc, or short-term products), please go to https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us and complete the questionnaire (in the comments section please mention you were the one asking this question) so I can further evaluate your situation and let you know what might be out there to help you plan for long-term care.

    • Charlene Hebert on November 18, 2015 at 8:47 am
    • Reply

    Hi! Do you think 71 is to old to buy a hybrid LTC plan for $3700 a yr. I am in very good health and my mother lived to be 94. Would I be better to put the money away for in home care if I need it. I live close to family and hope to be independent until the end. Thank you!

    1. Hi Charlene – I would love you to give you a definitive answer but I can’t based on this information. I need to know which hybrid policy you are considering and the benefits you would be getting for $3700 a year. I don’t think you would gain much by saving $3700 a year for home care. In short, there may be better options but I won’t know unless we talk for a few minutes so I can ask you some questions and learn more about you and the coverage you are considering. Would you please do me a favor and complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ so I can learn a little more about you? Then Lawrence Vivenzio on my staff will reach out to you to set up a no-obligation consultation with me if you wish to do so. Thanks for reaching out to me. Phyllis Shelton

  2. Hi Lauren – so glad the cancer was Stage 1. However, being able to apply through your daughter’s employer doesn’t exempt you from underwriting. If you still have it, you will not be insurable at this time. You need to be at least 12 months out from any treatment to be considered by LTC insurance companies. You can always call Genworth if you haven’t already and ask specifically when you can apply. Tell them everything so you don’t apply and get declined. You don’t want a decline on your record if you can avoid it. If you are at least 12 months treatment free and want my help to compare policies, please email Lawrence@ltcconsultants.com for an appointment time for a call.

    • Chris L on August 16, 2015 at 12:18 pm
    • Reply

    I am 54, is that early for LTC Insurance or will premiums cost less?

    1. 54 is by no means too early for LTC insurance…the younger the better Chris. Some people are totally uninsurable by age 54. The latest stats from the Centers for Disease Control is that 1 out of 3 people who are hospitalized for a stroke is under age 65. Please let us know if we can help at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

    • Chris L on August 16, 2015 at 12:13 pm
    • Reply

    Do you know anything about Lincoln money guard reserve?

    1. Yes. Lincoln is a very strong company. It is a combination life insurance and LTC insurance policy. Just make sure you put enough in so it will pay what you expect it to pay at claim time. The important thing is that you are able to make up the difference between what the care charges are on a monthly basis and what the policy pays.

    • Mel on June 25, 2015 at 10:23 am
    • Reply

    Hello Phyllis. I’m age 60 and am trying to research LTCi options. My advisor suggested Genworth, which seems like a reputable company. However, I’m also aware that MedAmerica also sells LTCi. I’ve tried to compare pricing, benefits, etc., but cannot find much info on MedAmerica’s policies. Would you suggest how I might get more info on policy options from MedAmerica? Thank you not only for myself, but for all of the people you’re assisting with this very complicated and confusing insurance that most of us will need at some point in our lives. Mel

    1. Hi Mel – I’m so glad you found me and thank you for your very kind words. I do believe Suze Orman has made me the Dear Abby of long-term are insurance and I love that! To answer your question, I am extremely familiar with MedAmerica. My company works with MedAmerica to provide the employee education for the State of Tennessee’s group long-term care insurance plan, so I can help you with that comparison. If you don’t mind taking a minute to complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/, my staff will be back with you to schedule a time for us to talk. There’s no obligation to buy anything of course. And if you share your address, we will send you a hard copy or ebook (your choice) of my little book The ABCs of Long-Term Care Insurance. It’s a simple little book which will give you a solid foundation on how to evaluate options for paying for long-term care. We do need to talk fairly soon however. MedAmerica is about to introduce a new policy and withdraw the current one. It would be wise for you to compare the pricing on the current policy while it is still available.

    • Sue Rundblad on June 22, 2015 at 6:21 am
    • Reply

    Do you recommend a hybrid policy

    1. Hello Sue – you can kinda anticipate my answer. It depends. You need to have enough money to put in a hybrid policy to build meaningful LTC benefits for yourself, not just now but in the future. Too often hybrid plans are sold with the line “Give me $100,000 and I’ll give you $300,000 for long-term care” with no discussion about how much it will pay for long-term care on a monthly basis in the future. Will it may a fourth, a third, half, two-thirds? You need to know that. There are hybrids that allow annual premium, not the large single premium, and some allow you to pay them off in 10 years or less. What people like about them is someone gets money if you die without needing LTC or if you only need a little. If you would like my help in evaluation the hybrid option with you, just take a minute and complete the short questionnaire at https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ My staff will be in touch with you to set up a no-obligation consultation with me.

  3. I received your name from Suze Ormans E-mail. I am interested in possibly getting LTC insurance. I don’t know who to contact . I live in Seattle, Washington. I’m going to be 59 years old in November. Can you help me to know what I need and can afford
    Any help would be appreciated. Thank-you for your attention to this letter.
    Dora Thompson

    1. Hello Dora – I am so glad you contacted me and will be glad to help you. All you need to do is go to this link and complete the short questionnaire. Then my staff will get back with you and schedule a time for us to talk so I can ask you a few more questions and make some recommendations. No obligation of course. https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/

    • Christine on May 7, 2015 at 2:46 pm
    • Reply

    I am 42 and take coumadin for life because I had 2 instances of idiopathic bloodclots. My husband is 54 and had a heart attack at 45 (family history) and a stroke because the surgeon accidentally severed his carotid artery during bypass surgery. He takes blood pressure meds, plavix, and cholesterol meds. We are both thin, active, and otherwise healthy. We keep a healthy mostly organic diet. We’re just genetically unlucky. I have cancer in my family and my 79 year old mother has dementia. I want LTC insurance for us. Is there any hope that someone would be willing to insure us?

    1. We are always happy to talk with you and your husband and suggest creative solutions to help you. Please email Lawrence@ltcconsultants.com to set up a convenient time to talk with us.

    • James Hickey on March 29, 2015 at 6:37 am
    • Reply

    my question is my mother is 91 she doesnt have much in assets and her ltc plan only pays $90.00 per day what can i do

    1. That’s a benefit of about $2700 a month. If she has a little additional income (Social Security?), she should be able to afford an assisted living facility, depending on where you live. Assisted living averages about $3500 a month. If she needs more care than an assisted living facility can provide, she may be a candidate for the Medicaid long-term care benefit. You can see your state’s requirement here https://www.gotltci.com/2015/01/what-your-state-lets-you-keep/ and please feel free to contact me for a more detailed explanation. 888-400-1118 or phyllis@gotltci.com.

    • Frankie on January 27, 2014 at 9:18 pm
    • Reply

    My question is about the benefits of having LTC Insurance for couples who do not have kids and there is no other family to ‘protect’. Is LTC Insurance still a good option in this situation? Also do all facilities take LTC Insurance from any carrier?

    1. The benefits of having LTC insurance are even greater for couples without kids or family to act as caregivers, Frankie. That means you will need paid caregivers as you can’t take care of each other 24/7. With LTC insurance, you can stay home as long as possible, or you may prefer an assisted living facility. An ALF means no house and yard maintenance and you no longer have to cook for yourselves. Both of you can move into a unit when only one needs care and the insurance will pay. In a nutshell, what I’m trying to explain is that LTC insurance gives you private pay choices and makes a nursing home the last resort. Then if you need nursing home care, you get to pick the one you want vs. having the state tell you where to go. Yes, the facilities love long-term care insurance as that puts private-pay dollars in their pockets fast!

    • Richard White on November 17, 2013 at 11:20 pm
    • Reply

    I have a CNA LTC policy purchased in Ohio 1998. I am no longer a resident of Ohio having moved to Nevada in 2001. Is my policy enforceable in Nevada or do I face a challenge from CNA

    1. Your policy will work fine in Nevada, Richard, or any other state.

    • Nora D. on December 31, 2012 at 4:58 pm
    • Reply

    I got your name from a Susie Orman article saying you are her go-to expert on LTC issues! I am 70 years old; 10 years ago I bought LTC from Continental Casualty Company. A few years ago the company backed out of taking any more LTC policies but said they would honor the ones they have. Do I need to worry about this company honoring my policy should I need it. (I am healthy and on no meds.)

    1. Continental Casualty Company (CNA) was a very active participant in the long-term care insurance market when you bought your policy, Nora, and sold a lot of policies. They have been honoring and will continue to honor these policies. I’m not aware of any major problem with CNA paying claims. I just went to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners site and see that CNA’s complaint ratio is well under the national median complaint ratio. You can look as well at https://eapps.naic.org/cis/ CNA handles a lot of products so you want to search under “individual accident and health”. It sounds like you are healthy enough to add additional coverage with another carrier if you think you need more. For example, you can ask your financial professional to review your CNA policy to be sure the inflation benefit you selected is giving you the amount of coverage you need. Or, you can also add additional home care or perhaps additional facility care from a carrier that offers those benefits separately, depending on where you see yourself needing care.

    • Pam on December 16, 2012 at 3:10 pm
    • Reply

    Thank you for your service, it is greatly appreciated by so many. I would like to know if you would give me the name of a couple of ins. co. you use for LTCI. I am 59 & only take synthroid. My husband is 62 and not on any meds. We would like to look into this insurance before it is to late. Thanks, Pam

    1. Hi Pam, it’s good to hear from you. You and your husband sound like excellent candidates for long-term care insurance and you are right. You should not wait any longer to look into it. If you don’t have a local professional who is knowledgeable in long-term care insurance, I will be happy to help you. I fit the insurance company to the applicant after finding out more about them. If you will please go to https://www.gotltci.com/contact-us/ and answer the questions for yourself and your husband, I’ll be back in touch with ideas. Thanks, Phyllis Shelton

    • D Brantley on August 13, 2012 at 2:07 pm
    • Reply

    I am 58 , soon to be 59 looking into LTC insurance. I’m single and have been sent a premium quote for facility, and home care from TransAmerica for less than 100$ per month w contingent nonforfiture, 3% compund inflation protection for 2 yrs. I will be able to afford this but I’m a bit skidish in the probable increases inthe cost of care over the next 20+ years. This quote started out paying a daily amount of $130. That would leave at todays’s rate ~$100 a day to pay out of pocket. I just wondering if this sounds reasonable to you or would you suggest somethign different?

    I’m in good health and take no meds at this time.


    1. You are right in thinking the cost of care will continue to increase and in my opinion, it will increase more in the neighborhood of 5% a year, not 3%. When you consider the premium between 5% and 3% compound, you need to compare the difference you will pay in premium over the next 25-30 years vs. the difference you will pay out of your pocket at claim time. I have just posted the article “Long-Term Care Insurance: A Priceless Equation” under LTCi Benefits on this site to help people do that. I think you will find there is no comparison. In 30 years, the benefits with 3% compound are usually about half of what they would have been with 5% compound. Whatever you do, do it now while you can qualify for the preferred health discount. I see that going away with some carriers already.

    • Mrs. Welch on June 8, 2012 at 11:15 am
    • Reply

    I found you through Suze Orman and I’m in the process of ordering your Two
    Volume Set on Long Term Care Insurance. I’ll e-mail you later, because I do
    want to purchase LTC Ins. soon. I’ll read the books so I’ll have more specific
    Thank You!

    1. so glad to hear from you Mrs. Welch. Planning for long-term care is essential for every American! We are here for you if you do not have a knowledgeable long-term care insurance professional. Just go to the Q&A tab on the site under “Contact Us” and answer those questions for us when you are ready for your personal consultation.

    • Nel M on May 11, 2012 at 9:51 am
    • Reply

    I found your web site in Suze Ormans book. I am 61 years young and would like to know how much coverage do I really need if my income is limited. I am on a fixed income, widow and not working. I have Rheumatoid Arthritis which dosent bother me to much now, but I know in the future I will need help and I dont want to burden my two sons or their wives. I am totally debt free and own a small modest home and car.

    1. so glad you contacted me – will you answer these questions please?

      Birthdate and age:

      Spouse/partner (if applicable) birthdate and age:

      Any pending surgery?

      Prescription medication:
      -name of drug
      -reason you are taking it
      -any change in how it is prescribed in the last six months?

      Do you have any other long-term care insurance coverage? If so, please have the policy benefits available if you wish to have a follow-up call to discuss coverage.

      Where do you live now and do you intend to retire there? If not, where do you think you might retire?

    • Donna R. on February 22, 2012 at 12:15 pm
    • Reply

    I would like to get LTC but so far have been unable and I’m hoping you know someone who would insure me. I have been diagnosed with benign sensory MS. Everyone as soon as they hear “MS” say I’m not qualified. This type however, is a rare type that’s almost harmless. I have the pins and needles feeling in my hands and feet, imbalance in my walk and that’s about it. It won’t get worse from here. I take no meds for it whatsoever. I do have high cholesterol and low thyroid, both of which are controlled with meds. Is there any way I can get LTC. I’m 56 and in relatively good shape except for the MS. Any help you can give me is very much appreciated. Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Donna – I just wanted to say again that I’m sorry I couldn’t find a carrier to help you. I will mention one other idea. There is a company that will sell a plan to a healthy person and that person’s spouse or partner who is otherwise uninsurable is able to get a plan that will pay 60% of the healthy partner’s benefit while the healthy partner is on claim. This is called a contingent insured benefit. I’m doing this with some friends of mine as the wife is totally uninsurable. Let me know if you want more info on that. Thanks, Phyllis

    • Margaret F. on August 24, 2011 at 5:15 pm
    • Reply

    I’m 66, in good health, single, & planning to retire at 70. my mother is 88 &
    has mild dementia. should I consider a facility only policy because my
    retirement income will be $1500 a month? soc sec= $900 & 401K = $500.
    home is worth $400K & is paid off except for a $50,000 equity loan.
    I have $110K in 401K & will stay in it another 4 yrs.
    thank you for this website!

    • Carolyn S. on June 15, 2011 at 5:27 pm
    • Reply

    I am a 71 year old never been married female. Would like for you to give me some advice. I do have a retirement income and am saving monthly. CC debt is $15,000 but it will be paid off by next year. The house and car are paid off. No health issues right now. Do I need to consider LTC now. Thanks for your reply. C

    1. Carolyn, congratulations on almost being debt-free! And you’re in good health…the two together make you a truly blessed person. I’ll give you a short answer and a long answer to your question. The short answer is if you are going to consider long-term care insurance, now is certainly the time because your health could change at any time. That’s true for any age. I love to say that money pays for long-term care insurance but health buys it. Once you have a significant health problem, no amount of money can buy this insurance product. Now the long answer is wrapped around “do you need long-term care insurance?” For that, I have a list of questions for you to consider: 1) do you have dementia in your family? 2) longevity? I can tell you that 2/3 of LTCi claims are paid on women. The funny thing about long-term care is sometimes the better we take care of ourselves, the more LTC we need. Why? Because we don’t have a heart attack or massive stroke or develop cancer – we just wear out, and the healthier we are, the longer that can take!
      3) If you do need care, how do you see that happening? 24 hour home care is expensive – well over $300 a day and much higher in some parts of the country. Sometimes a really high-end assisted living facility can be a better choice and much less expensive. You are probably very independent and want the best. The cost of care has tripled in the last 20 years and no reason to think it won’t triple in the next 20 years. I don’t know what your assets are, but if you think you might live to 91 years old, care will range from $15,000-$20,000 a month in most parts of the country by then. Can you pay that comfortably out of your income and savings? Do you want to? Is there someone or something you want to leave money to? . With the new combo products, you can leverage an asset 2-3X and leave it to someone if you don’t need LTC. As you can see, many considerations, including the cost of care where you live as that influences the benefits you need. If you like a private consultation, please email pennye@GotLTCi.com to select a time, and I can customize my answer for you.

    • Linda R. on May 13, 2011 at 7:51 am
    • Reply

    I got your name from Suze Ormans book. I am interested in possibly getting
    LTC insurance. I don’t know who to contact . We are currently in Washington DC
    but will be moving to North Carolina in the near future. We (spouses) are both
    59 years of age. Can you help us to know what we need and can afford?
    Any help would be appreciated. Thank-you for your attention to this letter.

    Linda R.

    1. I’ll be glad to help you, Linda, as it sounds like you don’t have a local agent. How exciting that you are headed for North Carolina…definitely my favorite state next to Tennessee! Your premium will be less for receiving care in North Carolina than Washington DC so nothing wrong with that, right? Just gather the information listed on the “Contact us” page on this site to help me figure out what you and your husband need, and contact Pennye@GotLTCi.com to set up a time to talk with me for about 15-20 minutes. Let’s get your husband on the call too so he hears everything. Congratulations for seeking this critical information on how to plan for LTC, Linda!

    • Lucy C. on April 5, 2011 at 9:23 pm
    • Reply

    I saw the huge bills created as my mother got sick and ultimately died. Now, it absolutely terrifies me that one day I might be in that same position. I hope you can shed some light on a way to get LTC insurance if your are not financially well off. (I am single with no kids.)

    1. Hi Lucy. It’s especially difficult for single women to contemplate being alone without adequate care as we age. The type of policy that could work best for you would be a facility only policy. It pays for assisted living facilities as well as full scale nursing facilities. It doesn’t pay for home care, but a single person who needs enough care to qualify to receive benefits from a long-term care insurance policy usually can’t stay home very long without needing more home care than the policy can pay. It can also be difficult to manage your medication, cook for yourself, clean your home, mow your lawn, etc. Being socially isolated can lead to depression as well.

      A facility only policy costs significantly less than a plan that pays for home care which is called a comprehensive policy. I would rather see you use your precious premium dollars to buy enough coverage to stay in a really nice assisted living facility instead of diluting them to pay for home care which you may never use. The other tremendous advantage of being able to have assisted living care is that you have a personal unit for privacy but you can mingle with others, which often prevents the depression that can occur when living alone and not being able to get all the help you need to not only take care of yourself, but your home as well.

      With further knowledge of your personal situation, I may be able to offer you some options. Please email Pennye@GotLTCi.com to set up a personal consultation with me.

    • velma p. on March 24, 2011 at 8:18 am
    • Reply

    I just ordered your books; however I would like to know if you are a partner in a business can you pay lump sums on a policy and have this deducted.


    1. Congratulations on taking the step to order my books! The answer to your question is “yes, to a point”. It depends on what type of business it is. If you are an owner in a C-corporation, the most you can deduct safely without getting into a gray area with the IRS is a plan that will be paid up in 10 years (the insurance lingo is a “10-Pay”). There are other limited plans that are paid up in 20 years or by age 65. A single premium (which is almost non-existent today) could raise a red flag to the IRS.

      If you are a business owner in the self-employed group (sole proprietor, partnership, an LLC which stands for Limited Liability Corporation, or greater than 2% owner of an S-corp), you can deduct an age-based amount of premium as part of the self-employed health insurance deduction on Line 29 of IRS Form 1040. This amount generally increases each January. The table is on the inside cover of my big book, Long-Term Care: Your Financial Planning Guide, and you can real the detail of all available tax incentives for long-term care insurance on pp. 18-26 in Chapter One. The nice thing about this tax incentive is that it also applies to your spouse if you are married.

      If you have employees, 100% of their premium is deductible as a business expense, just like health insurance, and that deduction also includes spouses. So now that I’ve saved you money by showing you how part or all of your long-term care insurance premium is deductible, you can use the savings to be sure you have the best inflation benefit you can afford Pages 20-24 in The ABC’s of Long-Term Care Insurance will tell you clearly how to choose that benefit!

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