Northwestern Mutual Long-Term Care Insurance Review

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Northwestern Mutual Long-Term Care Insurance Review

Company Details

Founded: 1857
Headquarters: Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Claim Information

Phone Number: 800-621-3724

Products Offered

  • Long-Term Care Insurance
  • Retirement/401k Services
  • Life Insurance
  • Disability Insurance
  • Annuities

Insurer Highlights

Northwestern Mutual is one of the largest mutual insurance companies in the United States. Headquartered in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Northwestern Mutual is ranked in the top 100 Fortune 500 list of the largest corporations in the United States.

The company is well respected and highly rated by the rating agencies, with A++ ratings from A.M. Best and AA+ with Standard and Poors. 

Northwestern Mutual's top insurance product is life insurance, but they offer Long-Term Care Insurance and often bundle it with other products for clients with assets under management.

The company offers wealth and asset income protection, education, retirement, investment advisory services, financial planning, trust and private client services, estate planning, and business planning. 

Expensive LTC Option

Northwestern Mutual is one of the most expensive options for Long-Term Care Insurance, with premiums substantially higher than other companies comparing the same benefits. However, they project dividend payments on their Long-Term Care Insurance policies. While this could offset some of the higher costs if they paid dividends, it would be doubtful it would ever offset the much higher cost of the policy. 

The product is sold exclusively by Northwestern Mutual Life agents.

Key LTC Insurance Features and Benefits

Northwestern Mutual Key Features and Benefits:

  • Monthly benefits from $1500 to $12,000 a month

  • Benefit period of up to 6 years creates a pool of money

  • Elimination Periods from 12 weeks to 52 weeks are available

  • Inflation options include 3%, 4%, and 5% compounded or a guaranteed purchase option

  • Survivorship Benefit option

  •  Spousal discounts

They do not offer shared spousal benefits, a popular benefit that many companies offer.

Be Careful with Inflation Benefits

Since this product is very costly, many Northwestern Mutual financial advisors/agents quote the product with a "Guaranteed Purchase Option (GPO)" as the inflation benefit - or no inflation benefit at all. 

The GPO option is problematic since the policyholder's premium increases over time. The benefits only grow if the policyholder purchases these extra benefits when those options become available. 

Be careful - your premium and benefits automatically increase unless you refuse the option.

In some states, this GPO feature certifies the policy as a partnership plan; however, failure to accept an increase would void partnership benefits. 

Plus, failure to accept these benefits increases can void future offers.


Northwestern Mutual offers Partnership Long-Term Care Insurance policies in the partnership states. Partnership policies provide additional dollar-for-dollar asset protection.

Hybrid Long-Term Care

The company does have a hybrid product, although not a popular option compared to other hybrid policies from other insurance companies. Hybrid Long-Term Care Insurance combines life insurance with a qualified rider for long-term care. 

Northwestern Mutual also offers life insurance with an accelerated payout

to help pay for long-term health care expenses by tapping into the death benefit of a life insurance policy. However, this is not considered a real solution for long-term health care.


If you own a Northwestern Mutual Long-Term Care policy and seek help submitting a claim, LTC NEWS offers free - no-obligation assistance - including help finding quality caregivers and facilities. 

Since most agents, especially financial advisors have little or no experience in this area, this assistance can be beneficial for the entire family - Filing a Long-Term Care Insurance Claim.

Federal Regulation and Consumer Protections

All Long-Term Care Insurance contracts are regulated under IRS regulations §7702B(b). Any insurance contract that meets the guidelines set by the Internal Revenue Service is considered long-term care. All insurance products that meet these federal guidelines contain consumer protections and regulated benefit triggers, in addition to tax advantages.

Northwestern Mutual Long-Term Care Insurance products meet federal guidelines. 

Find State-Specific Information

Each state has a state-specific page that includes the current and future cost of long-term care services, available tax incentives, information on care providers, and other important information - LTC NEWS Cost of Care Calculator.


Long-Term Care Insurance is medically underwritten, and every company has underwriting rules that determine insurability and rate class. An experienced Long-Term Care Insurance specialist will understand these underwriting rules when helping you select the best company and policy options.

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

Northwestern Mutual underwriting is generally considered as "conservative." However, the company offers three rate classes, standard, rate 1, and rate 2. A Long-Term Care Insurance specialist can assist you in determining insurability and which rate class you would likely fall into.

Be sure to discuss your pre-existing health issues with a specialist, agent, or advisor before applying with Northwestern Mutual or any company.

Shopping for Long-Term Care Insurance?

When shopping for Long-Term Care Insurance coverage, remember that numerous state and federal regulations impact Long-Term Care Insurance. Each state's department of insurance regulates products and premiums. Because of regulation, an insurance agent, agency, or financial advisor cannot give a consumer a special discount that is not available otherwise. 

Use all the tools and resources available on LTC NEWS to help you in your research - Resources for Long-Term Care Planning.

Comparing LTC Insurance Products

Since your health is a primary consideration in determining your eligibility for coverage, it is always best to start planning before retirement when health is usually better. An experienced Long-Term Care Insurance specialist will ask several questions about your health to provide accurate quotes and professional recommendations.

There are more similarities than differences when it comes to features and benefits. However, options and benefits vary from company to company, and premiums can vary between companies by over 100% when comparing equal benefits.

Please note: Since every company has different underwriting rules, you could be eligible for coverage with one company and not another.

When comparing Long-Term Care Insurance, you should understand the differences between Northwestern Mutual and other companies. Remember, because of regulations, Long-Term Care Insurance products are similar, but variations exist between companies. 

Premiums and underwriting criteria vary dramatically between insurance companies. State variations may apply.

Need to file a claim?
View Insurance Claim Contact Information

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