Long term care insurance can either be purchased as an individual policy or as a joint policy with a spouse or significant other. Each company has rules about what is required to have a non-married significant other included on a joint policy.
When you purchase long term care insurance, you are buying a specific number of years of coverage (e.g. 3 years, 4 years, 6 years, lifetime, etc). This is the number of years you can receive care at home, in a nursing home, assisted living, or other facilities. A joint policy would double the number of years available since two people are insured (a 3-year benefit would be 6 years split between two people, for example). There is an important distinction to make on joint policies:
Shared care benefits – allows for a combined pool of years that can be split up in any manner. As an example, if John and Sue are married and have an 8-year benefit pool, John can use 2 years and Sue can use 6 years.
Non-shared benefits – does not allow the number of years to be combined. John and Sue in the example above would each have 4 years of coverage, but could not exceed that limit and any unused years does not transfer to the spouse.
Some companies, like Genworth, include the shared care benefits as a standard part of the policy, while other companies may require you to pay an extra premium to have a shared benefit. Always make sure to compare apples-to-apples when reviewing your long term care insurance choices.
To get a quote and compare long term care insurance policies from the top LTC companies in the industry, please give us a call at 1-888-972-0024 or CLICK HERE to send us an e-mail 24 hours a day. We can help design a long term care policy to suit your personal needs and budget. Due to the complex nature of structuring long term care plans, there is currently no way for us to offer instant online quoting.