Qualifying for long-term care insurance is getting harder nowadays – an effect of the initiative of long term care insurance providers to be more picky on approving applications.
Recent stats would show that the number of applicants denied of long term care coverage has swelled except the age group of 70-79 year olds that remained at 44%. Even if this age group didn’t have an increase in the decline rate, this is still bad news since there are still people who apply for a policy that late.
|Long Term Care Insurance Applicants Denied of Coverage|
|Below Age 50||20%|
These numbers reveal how people think about buying long-term care insurance. They mistakenly think that they can buy at any age and get approved. The truth is, it’s harder to qualify for coverage when you’re older because you’re health declines and you are more at risk of requiring care and filing for a claim. Insurers would avoid that anytime of the day.
It’s hard to qualify but not impossible. To help you, here’s a list of hacks that are proven to help increase your chance of qualifying for long-term care insurance.
Buy Policy Before Turning 50
Why 50? Buying a policy before you reach the age of 50 is ideal because of its many perks. One worth mentioning is being entitled to low premiums that can go as high as 20%. The logic behind this is simple. Since you’re younger and you’re in fine fettle, insurers will give you good health discounts.
Here’s an estimate costs of long term care insurance based on age and gender.
Aside from health discounts, you can also avoid rejection of your long term care policy application. There’s little chance you have pre-existing conditions such as Alzheimer’s, AIDS/HIV+, Paralysis and more or you are at risk of developing a serious health condition, so insurers would approve your application.
Shop from Different Insurers
Just because one company declined your application because of your old age or you have a pre-existing condition also means that you will never have coverage. In fact, some companies might decline your application because of certain conditions while others might consider it. For example, Genworth, John Hancock, Mass Mutual and Transamerica will deny your application outright if you have diabetes or a history of heart disease but Mutual of Omaha will consider it.
Underwriting guidelines differ from one company to another. Plus, underwriters are human and can interpret your health condition and medical records differently, which creates different outcomes for you. So don’t apply to one insurer only. Shop from different long-term care insurance providers to increase your chance of qualifying for a long-term care policy.
Be Honest and Accurate in Answering Health Questions
Most long term care insurance providers don’t require face-to-face insurance exams. But, be ready to receive a call from them that usually lasts from 20 to 45 minutes or it might last longer than that if you have a lot of medical history. Also, the phone interview might take a while if they need to check your cognitive skills. Some questions on the application form will be repeated on the phone interview so it would be easier to have a copy of your application form so you can provide accurate answers.
There’s no point in lying and hiding things from the underwriter since they might retrieve your medical records from your health care provider. Pulling up of records is not required in most cases but might not be required for some medical histories.
Explore Group Long Term Care Insurance
If you have pre-existing conditions, you can opt for employer-sponsored long -term care insurance or group long-term care insurance because it has loose underwriting. Your policy application will not get rejected even if you have medical history since the risk is spread among individuals who are healthy and with pre-existing conditions.
Paying high premiums is also not a problem with this type of ltc insurance because it is designed to have affordable rates and will not increase unless you add more features to your coverage.
Ask Help from Experienced Agents
Working with experienced agents is the key in securing your long-term care coverage. Since insurers have different underwriting standards, it’s best to work with agents or brokers who know what they are doing and can help you find a company that will sell you long-term care insurance even if you have a pre-existing condition.
Find someone who has access to variety of long-term care insurance companies. Most agents today can only do business for their primary company and others work with 2 to 3 companies. In case you get declined, these agents have no one to turn to unlike if you work with an agent who can write business for a lot of insurance companies
It’s also important to find an agent who has already sold a lot of policies. Most agents write less than five policies in a year. In case your chosen agent has less experience, he or she might have a hard time to provide you with a favorable outcome.
Following these tips can help you get coverage but why wait until it’s harder for you to qualify than to start planning for long term care while you’re still young and healthy.
Many individuals don’t qualify for coverage because of their old age and health. You should avoid delaying getting long-term care insurance at all cost if you want to make sure that you’ll qualify for a long-term care policy. If not, your chances of getting declined increases.