Long Term Care Insurance

Parent Q&A

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  • Hello, my husband and I are trying to find a broker for long term care insurance who is familiar with companies that offer options for people with factors that make it harder for them to get standard long term care insurance. We would be grateful for any ideas or suggestions. Thanks!

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Archived Q&A and Reviews


Long Term Care Insurance -- help!

Nov 2011

Hello brilliant BPN community, We're looking to find someone to help us navigate the various Long Term Care insurance options. Anyone find someone they like? My husband and I are in our late 30s & after watching family members struggle with insane costs of care at a relatively young age, we're looking to find LTC insurance sooner than later. Anyone you recommend we talk to? Thanks! nervous nelly

We got LT care insurance for similar reasons -- watching how expensive it was/is for relatives to be cared for. We liked our agent, who specializes in LT care insurance and talked through a variety of options with us. Alan Pepper - License #0B48449 CUNA Mutual Group direct: 415.516.7951 (cell) email: alan_pepper2003 [at] yahoo.com BPN-er

I can highly recommend Sharon Wright who has lovingly educated me through not only long term care but disability insurance as well. She just opened a new space in Montclair Village and I can't say enough about what a wonderful sage she is. She is extremely smart with a nurturing nature and will put you at ease while taking care of all of your important long term investments. Sharon Wright Financial Representative (510) 388-2211 sharoniswright [at] gmail.com Laura

Hi There, We got our Long Term Care Insurance through Justin Martello. He's independent and a CFP (Certified Financial Planner) but got his start in Long Term Care Insurance so he really knows the ins and outs. He's not a cheesy sales dude, he will help you find the policy you need without making you feel like you were ''sold'' on something. He works in Berkeley at Effective Assets. His number is 510-549-2525. anon

I can highly recommend Kathy Nyman, NY Life Insurance. She works with clients all around the bay area, is very competent and a very caring person. Her email is krnyman [at] yahoo.com and her phone is 415-828-3037. Holly

My husband and I purchased long term care insurance a few years ago and were very satisfied with the help we received from Brad Badger. He listened attentively to our needs and concerns and then walked us through all of the choices and scenarios. When my husband did not qualify initially (knee problem), Brad found another option that worked - you are smart to be looking now before these types of problems show up! Brad's contact information is below. You can meet him at one of his various office locations, or he will come to your home or workplace. He came to us when we lived in Palo Alto. Brad Badger 6150 Stoneridge Mall Road, Suite 100 Pleasanton, CA 94588 (925) 520-4022 bradley.badger [at] nmfn.com Cheryl

I'm not an expert, but I did purchase LTC for my parents some years ago. Our agent is fantastic. He really takes the time to explain everything and doesn't rush anything. Please give him a call and tell him I referred you to him: Chuck Sutton 925-946-4451 Good luck! Carolyn

I would recommend Bett Martinez. I met her when I was in the insurance biz and was very impressed by her, especially by her knowledge of issues facing older people. Here is her info. and if you Google her, there are a number of references and reference to her work with the Chamber of Commerce, etc. Nice lady.I am not sure which number below is her work vs. home number. Berkeley, CA (510) 524-3200 \xc3\x83\xc2\xbd Bett Martinez Insurance Solutions-more info \xc3\x82\xc2\xbb 555 Pierce Street, Albany, CA (510) 526-0312 cocosar

I would like to recommend Liz Eshleman for Long Term Care insurance needs. I know her as a thoughtful, caring person who can help sort out your needs and find solutions in this regard. She can be reached at: (510) 528-0505. Anon.

Long-Term Care Insurance Broker

March 2011

Looking for a responsive, knowledgable and honest broker who specializes in long term care. We are specifically looking for a policy that meets the California Partnership guidelines. cld

I highly recommend Breedlove Insurance in Orinda. Sue Breedlove is very knowledgable about long term care particularly. She loves what she does and will make sure you are well informed and that she finds you the best policy to fit your needs. Her website is www.breedloveinsurance.com. Her # is 925.254.6262. anon

We used Bruce Goldsmith, and found him to be honest, reliable and extremely conscientious. He was recommended by friends who also had a good experience with him. He helped us sort through the pros and cons of different types and features of long-term care policies from several companies. His phone is 510-482-9431. email is bruce.goldsmith [at] nmfn.com

I can highly recommend Liz Eshleman for long-term care needs. You may contact her at (510) 528-0505, or cell (510) 710-8643. Anon.

Hi There. I bought my long-term care policy from Justin Martello. It is a partnership policy. He doesn't work for a single insurance company so he was able to help me shop around and get the best policy for my needs. He's a CFP in Berkeley and he started in finance as a long-term care insurance agent, so he really knows the territory. His number is 510-549-2525 and his email is justin [at] effectiveassets.net Good Luck! anonymous

Long Term Care Insurance for older relative

Oct 2010

I've been advised to find an attorney who specializes in insurance. A dear one in our family is gravitating towards dementia and will need long term care eventually, something we hadn't gotten around to yet. An out-of-state friend moved all of the family assets, which weren't much, to her father, making her mother basically ''destitute'' and eligible for Medicaid. Her mother now lives in a decent facility that is paid for by Medicaid. An attorney did all this for them. They are not wealthy and this arrangement has saved what little they had for her elderly father. Does anyone know if this is possible in California? Or an attorney who could advise us on this? We also want to get on board with Long Term Care insurance now and will need some help navigating that terrain. Thanks! Worried

Hi There, My financial advisor does Long Term Care Insurance. His name is Justin Martello and he is in Berkeley. His number is 510-549-2525. He helped us shop different companies because they all differ a bit on what they will cover as far as pre-existing conditions go. He was really helpful and easy to work with. Good Luck! anon

Susanne Cohen is a terrific attorney who practices in downtown Berkeley. She will either be able to help you or will give you a solid referral. She can be reached at 510- 540-6333. Jim

Broker for long-term care insurance

August 2008

Has anyone purchased long-term care insurance through the partnership with the California Dept of Health Care Services? If so, do you have a particular insurance broker you recommend? Any advice or suggestions on how to go about choosing coverage, a company or broker? Thanks for whatever suggestions you can offer. Debbie

A woman from my networking group, Constance Young, just gave a presentation to our group about long-term care insurance. She described 3 scenarious and explained what insurance was appropriate in each situation. In one situation her advice was insurance was not cost effective. Selling insurance is just part of what Constance does. She is a financial advisor. Her approach is one of comprehensive financial planning, incorporating goals, needs and dreams. She describes financial planning as a pyramid where insurance is the base, protecting the ''goose'' who makes investing possible. Even if you don't buy from her, I highly recommend you speak with her before you make a purchase. She can be reached at (510) 318-4475. Reisa

Last year, we worked with Constance Truitt of CLTC Insurance Services at 415 453-2253 who was able to explain the various partnership plans available. The State had randomly ''assigned'' us to New York Life and we also met with that agent, but that plan ended up being more expensive than the more generic Genworth plan we ended up going with. It's a lot of money and well worth spending the time to investigate and understand the choices you have. steprose

Your experience with long-term care insurance?

July 2002

Does anyone have any experience with or opinion about long-term care insurance? Is it a good deal, or a bad idea? I'm considering buying long-term care insurance for myself because I do not want to burden my child with the cost of long-term care in the event that (or when) I'm unable to care for myself. (I'm a single parent older mom.) Your input is appreciated. Thanks much!

I'm interested in other responses to the long-term-care insurance question. I, too, am a single mom (and getting older every day!), and I decided to get the insurance a few years ago, since the premium is partly determined by age. Like you, I knew there was a possibility of becoming an extreme burden on my child if I were to need this kind of care, and I figured it was in both our interests for me to get the insurance. If I ever needed it, it would MORE than pay for itself, and if I didn't need it, it was still a reasonable price to pay for peace of mind. I've seen some medicare-only nursing homes, and nobody would want to be in most of those if they had any choice. Through PERS, I pay $456 a year for this insurance. At this rate, if I paid for, say, 30 years, I'd still have paid less than $14,000 total. If I needed the care at any time, for even six months, I'd be ahead of the game, since this kind of care is EXPENSIVE. I'm willing to pay $14,000 over 30 years to know I wouldn't be warehoused and my child wouldn't be sent to the poorhouse if I needed long-term care. Any financial types out there with more/different info? Anonymous

If you are an UC employee, you may be eligible to participate in the long-term care insurance that CalPERS offers. I enrolled in that program out of the same concerns you voiced as an older, single parent. My cost is about $30/month. The cost depends on coverage options selected and age. After UC retirement, one can stay on the insurance. You can learn more about the CalPERS' plan at this web site: http://www.calpers.ca.gov/longtermcare/apply/. Looks like the current deadline for enrolling is July 31. There are other plans to choose from; I just don't know anything about them. anon

I am strongly in favor of long-term care insurance. I have had great anxiety about my own parents ability to care for themselves -- they did not plan ahead well financially, both have complex and costly diseases (cancer & diabetes), and I have concerns about their diminishing abilities to take care of basic tasks. After helping them move from a house into a condo two years ago, I immediately signed up for long term insurance through my work, and picked the most comprehensive, inflation protected plan. I never want my kids to worry about that!

I did not check out many plans thoroughly...I am a member of Cal PERS, which offered a good, low cost plan. But the rates were inexpensive for me (at age 35) and I could lock that price in forever. If you can afford the premiums, you can get plans which cover in-home care, not just nursing homes.

I think it's a great idea, and encourage you to do it. meg

Keep elderly parent's long-term care insurance?

Jan 2002

I am trying to decide about keeping Long Term Care Insurance for my elderly parent, and I would appreciate any advice from someone who has had a parent in long term care. The insurance is expensive. My mother has no assets to speak of, so we don't have it to protect her finances --- we are carrying it on the theory that she will have better care in a nursing home with private insurance than with Medical, if a nursing home should become necessary. She is in her mid-70s and in excellent health. The tradeoff seems to be: is it better to have a better level of care in a nursing home later, or is it better for her to enjoy the money currently going to insurance while she's young and healthy? (The premium -- which I pay -- would be a lot of money for her, with her small income from social security, if I just gave it to her instead of the insurance company.) Since this is comparing apples and oranges, there may be no right answer. I have consulted HICAP folks, but frankly speaking the people that I talked to didn't seem to have any more insight than I do, which is not much. Part of the question is -- how much better is nursing home care if you have private insurance versus Medical? Another is: how likely are we to need it -- what fraction of healthy people in their 70's eventually need long-term care? I would really appreciate any thoughts from someone with some experience with an elderly parent or relative in long term care. Thank you! Anonymous

I can't speak to the quality of care issue with private insurance vs. MediCal, but there is a very useful book that deals with long term care issues, including the pros and cons of such insurance. It is Avoiding the Nursing Home Trap by Nolo Press, the well-regarded legal self-help press in Berkeley. You can probably find the book in the library if you don't feel like buying it. I am thinking about sending copies to both of my parents as well as my in-laws to give them some useful information and open the door to discussions of what happens when they get old and need help caring for themselves (and how will we pay for it). Good luck.

A lot of people don't get to the point of needing a nursing home but do need help with activities of daily living in their current home (bathing, dressing grooming, housecleaning, meal prep etc). If your mother should have a health problem that affects her ability to do these things then family needs to provide this support or pay someone. If your mother gets on MediCal (she can own her home but has to live in it and have less than $2000) the county will pay someone just over minimum wage to help, which often means not very good service. I would suggest that you check out the coverage for this service in your Long Term Care Insurance Plan - it is a service that seniors can use for years and stay living at home. Be sure that it is not limited to a short period of time. My grandmother had someone take care of her in her home for 15 years. Elizabeth