Long-Term Care Insurance

Is planning for the future a heavy load? When most Montanans think about retirement, we think about how much money we’ll need to live on after we quit working. But sometimes income is only part of the picture. What if you need help to live independently in your home? What if you require specialized assistance in senior housing? Such care can quickly drain your savings.

Long-term care insurance pays for this kind of care. But long-term care insurance can also be very expensive—beyond the reach of many Montanans. And insurance is not the only way to get the care you may need. Depending on your age, disability, or income, there may be public programs to help. There are no easy answers. In many cases, long-term care insurance may not be the best bet for you.

To Buy or Not to Buy

If you are considering purchasing long-term care insurance, we recommend you weigh the benefits and the risks—and then talk it over with a trusted financial adviser or a licensed insurance agent before you buy. The Montana State Health Insurance Assistance Program—or SHIP—offers free assistance and expertise to all Montanans facing these issues. Many people think they may need assistance as they age and may therefore want to buy long-term care insurance. The longer you wait to buy long-term care insurance, the more expensive it will be. Insurance premiums could become unaffordable. In some cases, if you cancel the policy—even if you have paid for years—you will receive no benefits. In some cases, buying insurance doesn’t make sense, especially if you qualify for other programs. To help you make sense of all this, we put together a worksheet to help Montanans see if long-term care insurance is right for them.

The state’s Senior Long-Term Care program also has information on their website about services Medicaid may cover, as well as housing assistance in Montana.

Get the Worksheet

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Long-term Care Partnership Plans?

Medicaid will pay for long-term care, but only if a person has few assets. Some elderly Montanans may need to “use up” their assets in order to qualify. There is a separate kind of insurance available in Montana that can protect you from the need to spend down your assets in order to qualify for Medicaid long-term care assistance. This is called a “long-term care partnership plan.” More information about this type of insurance is available on the MSU Fact Sheet.

Long-term care partnership policies are not available from every insurance company. We keep a list of all the companies that sell such policies in Montana.

Penn Treaty Liquidation

Penn Treaty Network America Insurance Company  and American Network Insurance Company  are affiliated long-term care insurance companies that went into liquidation on March 1, 2017. Information about the companies’ liquidation can be found on Penn Treaty’s website, http://www.penntreaty.com/Liquidation.aspx.

The life and health insurance guaranty associations in the states where Penn Treaty and American Network were licensed to do business have assumed responsibility for their policies.  This includes continuing coverage and paying eligible claims, subject to guaranty association coverage limits and the terms and conditions of coverage. The guaranty associations have contracted for Penn Treaty to continue to administer all policies using Penn Treaty’s staff, existing computer systems, and policy/claim records.

Policyholders with questions about policies, claims, or related to Penn Treaty’s liquidation should call 1-800-362-0700.

Insurance Problems? Call us at 1-800-332-6148