Some people are concerned that they may not ever need long-term health care. What happens to the premiums if they never need care? We generally don't ask this question about our homeowners' insurance or auto insurance, but it is a question that gets asked sometimes with LTC Insurance.
If you never use your benefits, that meant you never needed long-term health care. Many people would consider that a blessing since the risk of needing extended care is high.
There are policies available that can provide a return of premium or a death benefit. The cost of the premium will be higher for the ability to get money back if you are lucky never to need care.
Asset-based Long-Term Care Insurance will offer a death benefit. There are "return of premium" riders on traditional policies that are also available.
Shared spousal benefits are another option. With this type of policy, the premium does not get returned at death, but unused benefits go to the other spouse.
If one spouse exhausts all their benefits, they can use the other partner's policy benefits. However, if one spouse dies, 100% of the unused benefits go to the survivor even though their premium disappears. While this option does not return the premium, the unused benefits go to the survivor.
Is the higher premium worth the cost? That is a personal decision; however, a qualified Long-Term Care Insurance specialist can discuss these options and the pros and cons of these options.