Many New Yorkers purchase long-term care insurance in order to protect their estates and their families from the exorbitant costs associated with needing long-term treatment later in life. A recent report indicates that a major problem exists with long-term care insurance, however, as many elderly people forget to make their payments, allowing their policies to lapse.
According to the Center for Retirement Research, almost one-third of people allow their long-term care insurance policies to lapse as they get older, forfeiting their benefits as a result. According to the research, a large number of people who allow them to lapse do so just as they most need the coverage.
People who purchase long-term care policies at age 65 with the intention of needing the coverage in their 80s may later become forgetful, failing to send in their payments. Of that group, 38 percent of women and 32 percent of men who purchased policies at age 65 allow them to lapse before they die. Lapses were especially common in those who developed cognitive impairments as well as those who were poor. To combat this problem, the elderly may want to ask that notices of their premium payments be sent to a relative. That way, their relative can make sure that the payment is made every month.
Elder care planning is important for people to do as they grow older. Those who decide to purchase long-term care insurance may want to take additional steps in order to help make certain they will not allow their policies to lapse. If they have a trusted family member, having their monthly statements mailed to their family member may help them to not forget to send in their payments. An attorney might suggest other methods of making sure that the payments are made on time, such as a trust set up for this express purpose.