Shopping for long-term care insurance can be a daunting and frightening task. You can’t get prices directly from the companies nor online. There is no ratings agency for insurance professionals that tells you whether the one you are speaking with is helping or just selling the only policy they are able to promote.
Every year just over half a million Americans apply for long-term care insurance. Most start the process as a result of reading a newspaper or magazine article, receiving a direct mail solicitation or perhaps because their employer offered the coverage. Most admit they had no idea where to begin and did so with much hesitation and trepidation.
There is a publication produced by insurance regulators called the Shoppers Guide but it is about as handy and current today as a volume of the Encyclopedia Britannica. Great if you want to press flowers but lousy if you want help when considering long-term care insurance.
The realization that consumers wanted something that wasn’t easily available inspired me to focus on the topic at a talk given recently before a group of aging baby boomers. They had heard about the risks that ensue from living a long life and the potential cost of long-term care. What they wanted to know was how to proceed. How can they tell who is telling the truth and who is giving a canned sales pitch.