Top Choices for Long-Term Care Insurance in 2023

Preparing for long-term health care is a significant part of retirement planning. This 2023 review of the top choices for Long-Term Care Insurance, be it traditional, hybrid, and alternative solutions will assist you in deciding which company is best for you.

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Top Choices for Long-Term Care Insurance in 2023
22 Min Read January 8th, 2023

Each year LTC News reviews the top solutions available to plan for the costs and burdens associated with aging and declining health. With so many people investigating Long-Term Care Insurance, you want to get accurate information. It is important to know which type of policy and insurance company is the best fit and affordable for you and your family. 

Below you will see the best options for 2023 for traditional Long-Term Care Insurance, asset-based hybrid policies, and short-term cash indemnity plans.

Every day you wake up, you are a day older. We are living longer, with aging brings many challenges, including chronic illnesses, mobility problems, dementia, and frailty. Longevity requires planning since our risk of needing help with everyday living activities or supervision increases with age.

Long-term health care provides the necessary help and assistance with non-medical help with daily living activities and ongoing skilled and semi-skilled medical services. 

Long-Term Health Care Costs Not Covered by Traditional Health Insurance

Traditional health insurance (including Medicare and supplements) will pay for a limited amount of days of skilled care services. Your need for skilled care may go on for a long time -- even the rest of your life. However, most people will need custodial care, and traditional health insurance programs do not pay for that. 

Custodial care is the help you need when a chronic illness, limitations on your mobility, or frailty limit your ability to carry out daily living activities like getting dressed, taking a bath, using the bathroom, and eating, for example. There are growing numbers of people who have dementia and require supervision. This "custodial care" is not covered by traditional health insurance and Medicare leaving the responsibility to you and your family.

Doesn't Health Insurance Pay for Long-Term Care? What About Medicare and Supplements? Medicaid?

Since long-term health care costs are expensive and rising rapidly nationwide, many people consider adding Long-Term Care Insurance to their retirement plan. 

LTC NEWS Cost of Care Calculator - Find Your Location

LTC Insurance Provides Guaranteed Tax-Free Benefits for Choice of Care

The guaranteed tax-free benefits will pay for your choice of quality care services, including in-home care. With the LTC Insurance benefits, you can protect your income and lifestyle and preserve your 401(k) and other savings from the ever-increasing cost of care services. 

In addition to asset protection, Long-Term Care Insurance results in quality care and time for your loved ones to remain family instead of becoming caregivers.

What Is Long-Term Care Insurance and What Does It Cover?

Questions to Get Answered First

When you start the process of determining if Long-Term Care Insurance is right for you, there are several questions to ask.

  1. "Is Long-Term Care Insurance Appropriate for Me?"

LTC Insurance is, in part, an asset protection product. If you don't have adequate income and savings, Long-Term Care Insurance is not something you should consider. Generally, you should have no less than $50,000 in assets and a home. Realistically, you probably should have more. That depends on where you live and how you will fund your future (or current) retirement. For example, someone who will have income from a pension may have fewer "assets" to protect but a significant income to protect. 

On the other hand, someone with an excess of five million dollars in assets may feel they can self-fund future long-term health care. People with much larger estates may be interested in Long-Term Care Insurance for several reasons:

  • Their money is tied up in real estate, trust funds, or businesses, and it would be difficult to liquidate to pay for future care.

  • They want to avoid tax complications of liquidating assets to pay for care.

  • They want to reduce the burden on family members. Most LTC Insurance policies have case management and other services that reduce the stress and anxiety that would otherwise be placed on your family, even if the funds are available.

  • A desire for complete asset protection. Some people wish to preserve the estate for children, grandchildren, charities, etc. While statistically less likely, an extended long-term care situation could be financially devasting. Alzheimer's, for example, could cost over $1,000,000 if you lived long enough. 

Whether you are middle class, upper middle class, or wealthy, Long-Term Care Insurance might be appropriate and affordable.

  1. "Do I Health Qualify for Long-Term Care Insurance?"

Long-Term Care Insurance is medically underwritten. Every insurance company has its individual underwriting criteria. However, your health may make you more difficult to insure or even impossible to qualify for coverage.

What is Underwriting? How Does Current Health Impact the Ability to Obtain Long-Term Care Insurance?   

  1. "Which Type of Policy Best Fits My Needs"

There are a variety of solutions for future long-term health care; these include:

  Hybrid Long-Term Care and Short-Term Care Options

There are also chronic illness riders on life insurance and other plans that can accelerate a death benefit. 

The answers to these questions will determine the type of plan that might be best for you and your family. Your age and health will also be a major consideration in which type of policy and which insurance company is best for your needs.

Each insurance company has its own underwriting criteria - 

What is Underwriting? How Does Current Health Impact the Ability to Obtain Long-Term Care Insurance?

Several factors go into how much a policy will cost. These factors include:

  • Age

  • Health

  • Family history

  • Benefit levels

  • Added Riders

How Much Does Long-Term Care Insurance Cost?

Tax-qualified Long-Term Care Insurance meets federal guidelines, so there are more similarities in how policies work and their features and benefits.

What are the Components of a Long-Term Care Insurance Policy?

There are tax incentives available as well.

Long-Term Care Insurance Tax Deduction Limits Increase for 2023 - IRS Reveals Schedule Based on Age

LTC Tax

There has never been a more crucial time to have Long-Term Care Insurance. The issue of longevity and deteriorating health over time is increasing the number of persons who require supervision due to dementia or assistance with activities of daily living. Nevertheless, several states are considering taxing citizens who don't have a qualified Long-Term Care Insurance policy. Such a strategy has been implemented in Washington State and will take effect in July 2023.

This is not just a pure tax, as the states are putting together a state-provided long-term care benefit. The plan in Washington, "Washington Cares," provides $36,500 in benefits. For most people, this is not an adequate plan for long-term health care. 

The tax on earned income is on anyone age 18 and older. As of this writing, California and New York are close to implementing a plan. Illinois, Michigan, and Minnesota are also actively putting together plans. 

The other states actively considering such a tax include:

  • Alaska

  • Colorado

  • Hawaii 

  • Missouri 

  • North Carolina

  • Oregon

  • Utah

One question is whether the states will give their residents advance notice to obtain Long-Term Care Insurance to avoid the tax. It generally takes six to eight weeks to apply and get approved for coverage. Many people in Washington ran out of time to obtain Long-Term Care Insurance to avoid the tax. Since the tax is on all your earned income (no cap), you pay more tax as you make more money. 

In New York, the plan being discussed requires the individual to have a qualified plan in place by the first of the year the law goes into effect.

While most experts suggest planning for the costs and burdens of aging as part of retirement planning, the tax in these states may force people, even younger ones, to obtain coverage. Otherwise, these individuals will pay a tax for the rest of their lives.

Which Company is Best?

Every year our staff interviews some of the top experts in the country, and here are our rankings for the best choices for 2023.

The good news is that Long-Term Care Insurance is regulated by both the federal government and the states. Consumer protections, tax incentives, and uniform benefit triggers are included in Tax-Qualified Long-Term Care Insurance that complies with Section 7702(b) of the U.S. Code, giving policyholders and their families peace of mind. Remember that no individual agent or advisor can provide you with special discounts because of these regulations.

Long-Term Care Insurance is medically underwritten, so you must have reasonably good health to obtain coverage. However, the underwriting criteria vary between companies. Insurance costs also vary dramatically between insurance companies, with premiums varying over 100% for the same benefits.

There are more similarities between companies than differences; however, like anything else, some options are better than others. LTC NEWS reviewed the top companies offering this coverage, both 'traditional' Long-Term Care Insurance and asset-based (hybrid) plans that combine life insurance or annuities with qualified Long-Term Care Insurance benefits. LTC NEWS also reviewed short-term cash indemnity policies as well.

The Top Three of 2023

#1. Mutual of Omaha 

Mutual of Omaha remains the top pick as the state-of-the-art option for traditional Long-Term Care Insurance in 2023. Competitively priced, Mutual of Omaha contains the features and benefits that most specialists recommend. As one of the nation's most respected insurance companies, their financial strength and outstanding reputation make Mutual of Omaha the top option to consider.

The company has been the industry leader for many years. Mutual of Omaha (a mutual insurance company) is rated A+ Superior by A.M. Best and has outstanding ratings with all the primary rating agencies for financial strength. 

Mutual of Omaha has two very similar products: MutualCare Custom Solution and MutualCare Secure Solution. However, most Long-Term Care Insurance specialists recommend MutualCare Custom Solution.

MutualCare Custom Solution offers a wider variety of features and options that can easily be custom-designed to fit your budget and needs. 

Perhaps the most important option is their inflation "buy-up" option. The policyholder can increase their inflation benefits in the future (through age 74) without evidence of insurability. Since most people purchasing LTC Insurance are in their 50s, the policyholder can increase their benefits when their health starts declining (or for any other reason.) 

Younger applicants can choose a lower inflation benefit at a much lower cost, perhaps when they have more expenses (like paying for their kid's college), and increase the inflation rate later when those expenses are reduced. 

We highly recommend only considering MutualCare Custom Solution.

MutualCare Secure Solution has fewer options and is less customizable than Custom Solution. An experienced Long-Term Care specialist who works with all the major companies will understand the differences. 

Custom Solution also has many more inflation options allowing you to custom design a plan that best fits your needs and budget.

Multiple inflation options, shared spousal/partner benefits, adjustable benefit levels for a nursing home compared to home care and assisted living, respite care, hospice benefits, care coordination, and additional money to pay for equipment and supplies if you are receiving care at home are all part of the policy. 

No question -- the policy is comprehensive.

Many couples include shared spousal benefits that allow one spouse or partner to use the other's benefits if they exhaust them. However, when one spouse dies, the entire remaining unused benefit goes to the survivor even though the premium has disappeared. 

Mutual of Omaha includes an alternate care benefit which can be very important, especially if you are under the age of 65 when purchasing a policy. The alternate care benefit allows the insurance company to pay for care options not listed in the policy. These could be things that may not even exist today. As long as these alternative options benefit your care and are cost-effective, the company will consider paying for them even though they are not specified in the policy.

Technology and caregiving techniques change over time. There will be advances in technology and caregiving in the decades ahead. Your Mutual of Omaha policy will be a 'living breathing' document benefiting you and your family in the decades ahead. 

Pros

  • Financially very strong mutual company that has been in business since 1909.

  • Outstanding reputation

  • Highly customizable

  • Monthly benefits as opposed to daily benefits. The company looks at all the bills for the month instead of daily. 

  • Pool of money product - if the policyholder does not use the entire monthly benefit at the time of claim, the remaining money stays in the benefit account and grows with inflation (if selected)

  • Available shared spousal benefits

  • Multiple inflation options

  • Good health and spousal discounts

  • Waiver of premium when receiving benefits

  • Very affordable for single/partnered men

  • Partnership certified 

  • International benefits (full benefit in the U.S., territories, The United Kingdom (England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, Canada, etc.) 

  • Shared spousal/partner benefits available

  • Cash benefit included in base policy

  • Alternate care benefit

  • Hospice and respite care

  • Bed reservation benefit

  • Several return of premium options available

  • Multiple underwriting classes 

Cons

  • Unavailable if two first-degree blood relatives had been diagnosed with dementia/Alzheimer's (parents and siblings)

  • More expensive for single women

  • Long underwriting process

  • No Ten-pay OR single pay premium option

  • Return of premium options NOT available with shared spousal benefit option

#2. Thrivent Financial 

Ranked number two for 2023 is Thrivent Financial. While not well known by some people, Thrivent is a non-profit fraternal organization, a Fortune 500 company. It has the highest AM Best Rating of A++ (Superior). It also has a COMDEX rating of 100 (the highest possible). 

However, it is not a company available to everyone.

Thrivent was founded as a mutual benefit society for Lutherans, but today, Thrivent offers products to all Christians. Therefore, a policyholder must indicate they share Christian values and are seeking to live out their faith as a Christian or are married to a Christian. There is a question on the application asking this question.

The company's commitment to Christian values is either a strong positive for consumers or could be a hurdle for others. Unless you consider yourself a Christian or are married to a Christian, Thrivent would not be an option.  

Thrivent has a comprehensive policy that offers a monthly benefit to pay for future care. The policyholder creates a benefit account with a benefit period creating an initial pool of money. 

If the policyholder does not use the maximum amount of available monthly benefit at the time of claim, the remaining money stays in the account and grows with inflation (if selected).

A benefit period does not mean you have benefits for only a certain period of time, but it would be the minimum length of time your benefits would last. 

Benefits not used are not lost and remain in your account. While the benefit period can be confusing, it works like most other companies by creating a benefit account or pool of money that can grow with inflation. 

The company offers shared spousal benefits and several inflation options, making customization easier. Thrivent's shared benefits work similarly to Mutual of Omaha, unlike other companies offering a third shared benefit account.

Two policies are connected by the rider. If one spouse uses up all their benefits, they can use the other spouse's benefits. Even though the premium has disappeared, when one spouse passes away, 100% of the unused benefits will go to the surviving spouse.

Single women, again, pay for more coverage compared to single men. Spousal discounts are also available. The policy also offers a cash rider giving the policyholder additional cash at claim time.

Their underwriting standards require more extended stability periods following recovery compared to most companies. You might have to wait longer to be eligible to purchase coverage following some surgeries or health events compared to other companies. 

Again, be sure your agent asks many health questions before considering Thrivent as an option. A Long-Term Care specialist who works with all the major companies will understand these differences. 

Ten-Pay Option

If you like the idea of your premium disappearing once you are retired, Thrivent offers a way to pay off your policy in ten years. Their 10-pay option gives you a fully paid policy with no additional required premium after ten years.

Thrivent is partnership certified in most states participating in the partnership program.

Pros

  • Financially very strong 

  • Outstanding reputation

  • Non-profit mutual company and pays dividends

  • Multiple inflation options available

  • Monthly benefits as opposed to daily benefits. The company looks at all the bills for the month instead of daily. 

  • A pool of money product - if the policyholder does not use the entire monthly benefit at the time of claim, the remaining money stays in the benefit account and grows with inflation (if selected)

  • Waiver of premium when receiving benefits

  • Shared spousal/partner benefits available

  • Cash rider available at extra charge

  • Partnership certified 

  • Care coordination is available at the time of claim

  • Limited payment option available

  • Respite care benefit

  • Ancillary benefits include equipment, home modification, and caregiver training 

  • Return of premium option available

  • Potential of dividends

  • Will consider applicants as young as age 18

  • Multiple underwriting classes

 Cons

  • Religious affiliation eliminates some people 

  • Much more expensive for single women

  • Elimination periods requires at least one day of paid services in a calendar week to receive credit for seven calendar days

  • Very limited international benefit

  • No single premium option

Another note - as a fraternal organization, Thrivent cannot participate in the state guaranty association in any state. The Guarantee Association ensures that you would still have guaranteed benefits. However, money would be available in their reserve funds to pay claims if a financial crisis affects the insurance company and they cannot pay claims on your policy. 

Thrivent is still required by law to maintain policy reserves equal to the present value of future benefits guaranteed in Thrivent contracts, less the current value of future premiums. Thrivent holds the necessary reserve and contingency funds to continue to provide guaranteed benefits even under very adverse conditions.

#3. National Guardian Life (NGL)

Number three on our top three list of best options for traditional Long-Term Care Insurance is National Guardian Life (NGL). NGL is a mutual insurance company founded in 1909 with nearly $5 billion in assets. 

The company has been in the long-term care marketplace since 2016. However, experts who designed the product have decades of experience.

 NGL is a financially strong company with an A.M. Best rating of A. It has maintained an outstanding reputation in all the lines of insurance they sell since they were founded in 1909.

Third Shared Pool for Couples

NGL stands out among the top three in 2023 due to their shared "third pool" partner benefit. Couples have one policy for two individual benefits. Each individual has a benefit account that increases with inflation (if selected as an option.) 

However, if they choose the shared care option, they also receive a third benefit account that increases in value if the inflation option is included. Both insureds have access to the third benefit account if they exhaust all of their own benefits.

NGL's shared care benefit offers policyholders outstanding coverage for the money, depending on their age and health.

Conservative Underwriting

NGL is a very conservative underwriter. The company has reviewed its underwriting criteria and broadened them slightly in the past year. Be sure the insurance agent/advisor or Long-Term Care Insurance specialist asks you detailed questions about your health and thoroughly understands the underwriting standards.

Generally, a Long-Term Care specialist who works with all the major companies will understand every company's underwriting criteria.

Daily Benefit Instead of Monthly Benefit

NGLs' use of a "daily" benefit instead of the "monthly benefit" many companies offer is a bit of a concern. With a daily benefit, the company looks at bills each day instead of all the invoices at the end of the month. When you have in-home care, you might have multiple providers on one day, causing that day's cost to be higher. You could see more out-of-pocket expenses than you would with a monthly benefit.

NGL is partnership certified in most states that participate in the partnership program. 

Their 'third pool shared spousal/partner benefit' is the primary reason to consider NGL; however, their lack of customization and overall pricing can make NGL more expensive in some situations.

There is no spousal discount if a married or partnered individual applies without their partner. NGL is more expensive for single women.

NGL has two limited pay options. You can pay one single premium and never be responsible for paying another premium again - no matter how long you live. You also can pay premiums over ten years and never be responsible for paying another premium.

If you own a "C" corporation, the single premium option would be 100% tax deductible. 

You can also add one of several 'return of premium' options.

The policy lacks an alternative benefit provision that both Mutual of Omaha and Thrivent Financial include. Those who purchase coverage in their 40s or 50s may be concerned that changes in technology and caregiving options may limit their policy in the decades to come. However, there is nothing to stop the company from adding new benefits in the future (without charge), although they cannot take away benefits from your policy.

Pros

  • Limited payment options available

  • Third shared benefit account for couples/partners

  • Waiver of premium at the time of claim waives 100% of a couple's premium since it is one policy for two people

  • Partnership certified 

Cons

  • Very conservative underwriting 

  • Only offers a "daily benefit" - no monthly benefit available 

  • No alternative benefit option - future changes in caregiving and technology would not be covered

  • Limited inflation options

  • The elimination period is "date of service," not "calendar day" 

NEUTRAL RATING

Several companies offer qualified Long-Term Care Insurance products that meet federal guidelines under Section 7702(b). No individual agent, agency, or advisor can offer special deals. Insurance companies must file their products and pricing with each state's insurance department.

While better value exists with the top three, these companies provide compressive policies that address the costs and burdens of long-term health care. These companies have our neutral rating.

New York Life and Northwestern Mutual are the two most expensive Long-Term Care Insurance products available.

New York Life

Again for 2023, New York Life receives a neutral rating. New York Life is one of the most financially strong insurance companies in the United States. Despite being financially strong, the premiums are very high.

They also affiliate with AARP with a branded Long-Term Care policy. New York Life has paid AARP for this endorsement.

New York Life also offers a product named "My Care," which comes with cash deductibles and an 80/20 co-insurance structure. Most specialists do not consider " My Care " a good option because of the high-cost sharing.

The company does offer a sub-standard rate allowing for more moderate underwriting.

Talk About Dividends

Some New York Life agents show illustrations that show the premiums disappearing when the insured is in their 80s because of dividends. This is very misleading. Most actuaries say the likelihood of dividends significantly lowering your premium is remote.

The bottom line is you should not depend on any future dividends to pay back the cost differences between New York Life and other companies.

In addition, many New York Life agents will offer an option with no inflation benefits or 'purchase options' that increase the premium regularly. Most people will want to avoid that type of policy design.

The company also offers an inflation benefit based on the CPI (Consumer Price Index), so there are no 'guaranteed' benefit increases; they are variable. The premium cost is high, and it is not recommended.

Consumers will find much better value elsewhere.

Northwestern Mutual

Like New York Life, Northwestern Mutual has an outstanding reputation and is a financially strong insurance company. However, premiums are very high, and the product is not competitive. Like New York Life, Northwestern Mutual agents will offer options with no inflation benefits or 'purchase options' that increase the premium regularly. Most people will want to avoid that type of policy design.

Consumers will find much better value elsewhere.

LifeSecure (Blue Cross - Blue Shield of Michigan)

At one time, LifeSecure was one of the leaders in individual Long-Term Care Insurance. However, several years ago, they stopped offering individual products and concentrated on the employee benefits market.

The current product is basic and not very competitive against other products; however, it could be an option if your employer plan includes relaxed underwriting — therefore, our neutral rating.

NOT RECOMMENDED

These companies offer products that meet federal guidelines; however, they are not recommended for various reasons.

These companies include:

Banker's Life

Bankers Life is the primary subsidiary of CNO Financial Group, Inc. (formerly known as Conseco, Inc until 2010). They have improved their AM Best rating to A- but the company and its parent have had financial problems in the past. Bankers Life holds a BBB+ from Fitch, Moody's ranked them at Baa1, and Standard & Poor's remains at BBB+.

In addition to past financial issues, the company has gained a reputation for not paying claims. A report by CBS News highlighted some of Bankers Life customers' problems when processing claims.

There are also numerous poor online reviews; however, most company reviews are negative by nature and should not be the only thing to look at when reviewing an insurance company.

There have also been media reports of high-pressure sales tactics used by Banker's Life agents. All their products are sold by "captive agents" who only offer their products.

The product itself is in line with most other policies. It has many extra options you can choose from at an additional cost. Banker's Life still uses a daily benefit instead of a monthly benefit, but overall has numerous features and options.

Banker's Life does offer wider underwriting compared to our recommended options. The company will also consider applicants as young as 18 and as old as 84.

However, considering everything, Banker's Life is NOT RECOMMENDED.

Knights of Columbus

The Knights of Columbus are similar to Thrivent, but the company limits its products' availability to Roman Catholics. Very financially strong, the Knights have a good reputation. However, Long-Term Care Insurance is not a primary product.

The policy is not partnership certified in any state.

The biggest downfall is the policy includes "usual and customary" language. At the time of claim, no matter what benefit you selected, and the provider's actual cost of care being billed to you, the insurance company will determine if the charge is "usual and customary."

For Long-Term Care Insurance, this is an unusual provision that limits the amount of benefits available at the time of claim. For this reason, this policy is NOT RECOMMENDED.

Federal Long-Term Care Insurance Employee Plan

The federal government has suspended sales of their employee Long-Term Care plan. They are expected to release a new product, perhaps by 2024.

John Hancock administers the LTCFEDS plan available to federal government employees and spouses.

This plan had been -NOT RECOMMENDED in previous years. We will review any new plan when it becomes available.

Asset-Based "Hybrid" Long-Term Care Insurance

There is a lot of attention in the insurance industry about hybrid Long-Term Care Insurance. Don't confuse "hybrid" policies that meet federal guidelines with life insurance that has a chronic illness rider or simply accelerates the death benefit. 

Asset-based "hybrid" policies combine a life insurance policy or annuity with extended Long-Term Care Insurance benefits. Either way, you will get a death or long-term care benefits. They are typically paid with one single premium, but you can extend the premium payments to make it easier on your budget.

They are more expensive than traditional Long-Term Care Insurance; however, you get the death benefit once you die if you never received long-term care benefits. Plus, the premium can never increase.

The only Hybrid policies recommended are products that are federally tax-qualified Long-Term Care Insurance policies as defined in IRS Code Section 7702(b). These federal regulations provide consumer protections, tax benefits, and standard benefit triggers that give the policyholder and their family additional peace of mind.

The primary companies for these products are:

Cash is King

Brighthouse Financial, Nationwide, and Securian offer cash benefits. Hard to beat a cash benefit. The company will pay you the full available benefit in cash. If you want complete flexibility at the claim time, one of these cash policies will be the solution.

One America offers a hybrid policy for two people with a second-to-die death benefit and an annuity/long-term care product that offers reduced underwriting. 

Brighthouse Financials’ most significant benefit, in addition to providing benefits in cash, is you can use benefits anywhere in the world. Full international benefits make Brighthouse the only choice for those who plan on living overseas or spending a significant amount of time outside the United States and U.S. territories. 

All of these are highly rated and financially strong companies. If you decide a hybrid policy is best for you and your family, limit your research to the above companies. 

Short-Term Cash Indemnity Policies

These products are not long-term care policies; they are cash indemnity plans that can offset the cost of long-term health care at home or in a facility.

These products can provide some benefits that can be beneficial when other options are not available (due to age or pre-existing health issues) - or for a person adding on to an existing Long-Term Care Insurance policy. 

NOTE: These products are not available in every state. You can see if your state has one of these products by clicking here.

Recommended 

Aetna/Continental Life

Aetna has two available products.

Recovery Care is the most comprehensive. It is a cash indemnity policy. Once you qualify for benefits, the policyholder gets the full eligible benefit in cash, no matter the size of the actual bill. You can use any provider you wish, including family, with a cash benefit.

It will pay up to 360 days for any long-term care facility (nursing home, memory care, rehabilitation facility, or assisted living facility). In most states, Aetna includes a restoration of benefits that provides an additional 360 days if you recover and go 180 days without requiring care. The maximum benefit choice is $400 a day.

Aetna will pay for up to 52 weeks of in-home care (in some states, 51 weeks). It also includes a restoration of benefits in most states. The maximum benefit choice is $1200 a week (Texas allows up to $3000 a week).

There is also a hospital indemnity that offers up to $300 a day every day you are in the hospital. This benefit has nothing to do with your health insurance or Medicare. It pays cash directly to you for each day in the hospital. 

The idea here is as you get older, you typically go to the hospital more often. After leaving the hospital, you often go to care either at home or in a facility. You do not need to be receiving long-term care services to qualify for this cash benefit, as an overnight hospital stay triggers the benefit.

Underwriting is much broader than Long-Term Care Insurance.

Aetna also offers Home Care Plus. This product eliminates the facility portion of the product above. Some people who are ineligible for Recovery Care may qualify for this product. 

These products are not available in every state.

Standard Life is similar to Aetna's Recovery Care and uses the same name. The underwriting is a bit more conservative. Like Aetna, the product is not available in every state.

Guaranteed Trust Life (GTL) also has plans similar to Aetna and Standard Life. GTL offers three products:

  • Recovery Cash

  • Home Care Secure

  • Home Health Care

Recovery Cash has more conservative underwriting but is broader than traditional Long-Term Care Insurance. It includes benefits for nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and home care. 

GTL's Home Health Care has limited home care benefits but very broad underwriting. This is limited coverage for people who cannot obtain coverage from other companies. It also includes a prescription drug reimbursement benefit which reduces the premium significantly if the policyholder has many prescription drugs. 

The products are not available in every state.

Final Note

This review of the top companies offering Long-Term Care Insurance is just that - a review. The only good policy is the one in force when you need it. 

People need long-term health care due to chronic health problems, mobility problems, dementia, and frailty due to aging. The need for care can happen at any age, but the risk increases as you age. As long-term health care costs continue to soar, the need to plan is vital to protect your 401(k) and other assets from the costs and burdens of aging.

But remember, long-term care is more than just a cash flow problem. It is a question about access to quality care in your desired setting. It also ensures your loved ones have the time to be family instead of caregivers.

Most people obtain their coverage in their 50s; premiums are based, in part, on your age, health, family history, and selected benefits. Policies are custom designed.

Be sure to get accurate quotes from all the top companies from a specialist who works with the major companies that offer these products. Your health can change anytime and being prepared will give your entire family peace of mind in the decades ahead.

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About the Author

An LTC News author focusing on long-term care and aging.

LTC News Contributor James Kelly

James Kelly

Contributor since August 21st, 2017

Editor's Note

Long-Term Care Insurance provides you with guaranteed tax-free resources to pay for your choice of quality care services, even at home. As the cost of long-term health care increases over time, so do your benefits.

Are you prepared for the consequences of aging? Do you want to preserve your 401(k) and other assets? Do you want to reduce the stress and anxiety that long-term care usually puts on those you love? In that case, better consider getting a plan in place now. Most people get coverage in their 50s.

Professional Help to Ensure You Have the Right Plan

LTC Insurance is custom designed. A qualified Long-Term Care Insurance specialist will match you with the best company to save you money. A specialist will put together accurate quotes from all the top companies based on your age, health, family history, and other factors.

Accurate Answers to Your Questions About Long-Term Care Planning

LTC NEWS has many tools and resources. These resources can help you in your research as you prepare for your future retirement and plan for the costs and burdens of aging and declining health.

Do Parents Need Assistance Right Now?

Get quality care for your parent or parents if they require it. LTC NEWS can assist. We've put together a few comprehensive guides to help you along the way.

Find help locating quality caregivers or long-term care facilities and get recommendations for a proper care plan, whether a person has a policy. - Filing a Long-Term Care Insurance Claim.

These four guides can be very helpful as you try to find appropriate long-term care services for a loved one:

If your loved one is fortunate enough to have Long-Term Care Insurance, make sure they use it. Families may wait, believing that they can save the benefits for a rainy day. It is not a good idea to put off using available Long-Term Care Insurance benefits.

Today's Reverse Mortgages Can Benefit Older Families

Some people have a large portion of their savings in their homes. With the help of reverse mortgages, you can find ways to pay for quality in-home care, pay for LTC Insurance, and even assist with cash flow during retirement.

Yes, today's reverse mortgages may be the perfect way to pay for a Long-Term Care Insurance policy or even cover the cost of in-home care if you or a loved one is currently in need.

Asking an expert with your questions will help you learn more. Mike Banner, a columnist for LTC NEWS and the host of the television program "62 Who Knew," will respond to your inquiries about long-term care, reverse mortgages, aging, and health.

- Just "Ask Mike." - Reverse Mortgages | LTC News.

Be Part of LTC NEWS

Improve your website or blog's SEO and gain exposure and traffic at the same time by being a contributor to LTC NEWS. 

You can promote yourself, your business, and your website or blog. It can include links to other sites, and you can share the article link once 

published on your website or social media. However, it must have editorial content exclusive to LTC NEWS and not just an advertisement.

Email your story idea or article: newsroom@ltcnews.com - LTC News Contributors | LTC News

LTC NEWS - Your Advertising and Marketing Partner

LTC NEWS can help you drive traffic to your website and attract people who are interested in your products and services. Furthermore, you can improve the SEO of your website so that more customers can find you when they search for your products and services.

There are various marketing options available with LTC NEWS. Traditional advertising, sponsored content articles, strategic alliances, and more are available. 

Learn more about how LTC NEWS can help market your business, drive traffic, and improve SEO - Advertise With Us | LTC News.

Shared Links

LTC NEWS offers a 'helpful links' page so readers looking for additional information can find them easily. You can get a dofollow link to your website on LTC NEWS in exchange for a dofollow link on your site.

Let's work together and help consumers who search for us on the web - Site Request | LTC News.

You can also affordably purchase a dofollow link to your website or blog on LTC NEWS. Just contact the advertising department.

Sharing News with LTC NEWS 

Include LTC NEWS in your press release distribution. If your group, organization, business, political committee, etc., have news to share, send it to LTC NEWS. Email - newsroom@ltcnews.com  

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