Category Archives: LTCi Dictionary


John Hancock Long-Term Care Insurance: Financial Ratings

John Hancock Long-Term Care Insurance

John Hancock is focused on providing innovative long-term care insurance in ways to best protect you and your family so that you can have the confidence and control you need.

Commitment and Experience

  • Over 150 years of experience and stability in the insurance business.
  • A commitment to the long-term care insurance business since 1987.

Financial Strength

  • Financial strength ratings among the highest in the insurance industry.14
  • More than 1.3 million long-term care insurance policyholders.15
  • More than $4 billion in long-term care insurance claims paid.15
  • More than $27.6 billion in Total Funds Under Management pay long-term care insurance claims.15

John Hancock Financial Ratings Chart

  1. Based on analysis by major rating agencies such as A.M. Best, Fitch Ratings, Standard & Poors, and Moody’s. Financial strength ratings measure the Company’s ability to honor it’s financial commitments and are subject to change. The ratings are not an assessment or recommendation of specific policy provisions, premium rates or practices of the insurance company.
  2. Based on John Hancock internal data from 1987-2011. Total includes individual and group LTC insurance, and the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program. Information available upon request.
  3. Financial strength ratings, which are current as of April 30, 2012, and are subject to change, measure the company’s ability to honor its financial commitments. The ratings are not an assessment or recommendation of specific policy provisions, premium rates, or practices of the insurance company.


How Much Does Long-Term Care Insurance Cost?

Here are a few facts which may surprise you:

  1. Long-term care insurance is very flexible.  Every long-term care policy gives you many choices for your benefits.  You choose your:  Daily BenefitInflation BenefitPolicy Limit, and Elimination Period.  The richer the benefits you choose, the higher your premium.  The more modest the benefits you choose, the lower your premium.  You are in control of those choices.
  2. Shop around. You can save thousands of dollars over your lifetime by shopping and comparing prices from several of the top long-term care policies.  Every long-term care policy has a unique way of calculating your premium based upon your age, your choice of benefits, and your health history.  When comparing several of the leading policies, with nearly identical benefits, premiums will often vary by as much as 70%.
  3. Premium Payment Periods. You can choose one of four premium payment periods for your long-term care policy.  You can choose:  a stepped premium payment, a standard premium payment, a shortened premium payment, or a single premium payment.  A “stepped premium payment” method can start off about 30% less than a “standard premium payment” method.
  4. Use pre-tax dollars. You can significantly decrease the “net cost” of your long-term care policy by using pre-tax dollars to help pay your long-term care insurance premiums.  There are now 10 different ways owners of long-term care insurance cansave on their federal and state income taxes.  Depending upon your state and federal income tax bracket, this can decrease your “net cost” by 30% or more.
  5. Buy a Partnership-Qualified Policy. Now that 40 states have“Long-Term Care Partnership programs” you do not have to buy an expensive “unlimited” long-term care insurance policy.  You only need to buy an amount of long-term care insurance equal to the amount of assets you want to protect for yourself, your spouse or partner, and/or your heirs.  The Long-Term Care Partnership programs provide dollar-for-dollar asset protection.  Each dollar that your Partnership-Qualified Policypays out in benefits entitles you to keep an extra dollar of countable assets if you ever need to apply for Medicaid services.
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What is a “Partnership Qualified Policy”?

Partnership Qualified Policy = A type of policy that allows you to protect (keep) some of your assets if you apply for Medicaid after using your policies benefits. Not all states have these policies.

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What is an “Underwriting Class”?

The cost of a long-term care insurance policy is based upon several factors:

  • your age at the time you apply for the policy,
  • the benefits you choose for your policy,
  • your premium payment option (e.g. 10-pay, “pay to age 65″, lifetime pay)
  • your state of residence,
  • whether you live alone or with a spouse, partner, or other family member,
  • and your health history.
Your health history determines your “underwriting class”.  Most long-term care insurance policies have 3 different “underwriting classes”:  Preferred, Standard, and Substandard.

Preferred Health Discounts are usually 10% to 15%, but can be as high as 35% with some long-term care policies.  

The better your health history, the lower your premium.
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What is “Inflation Protection” in a Long-Term Care Insurance Policy?

Inflation Protection =

A policy option that provides for increases in benefit levels to help pay for expected increases in the costs of long-term care services.

Kentucky Long-Term Care Partnership Program Information

Long-Term Care Insurance Partnership ProgramKY LTCi Guide 2012-2013

The partnership program is designed to provide incentives for people to take personal responsibility for their own care by purchasing long-term care insurance. The program was designed to reduce Medicaid costs for nursing home care. In addition, it encourages Kentuckians to purchase long-term care insurance in order to protect some or all of their assets by providing exemptions from the Medicaid spend down requirements.

Consumers who purchase and utilize benefits from a long-term care insurance
partnership policy will be exempt from Medicaid spend down requirements equal to the amount of benefits paid by the long-term care partnership insurance policy. For example, if your long-term care partnership policy paid $200,000 in benefits, then $200,000 of your assets would be exempted from Medicaid spend down requirements.

This program will help Kentuckians financially prepare for the possibility of needing long-term care services such as nursing home care, home health care or assisted living facility care. You will be able to purchase this product from any insurance company who chooses to offer a long-term care partnership policy once the program goes into effect.

Will my assets be exempt for Medicaid spend down requirements if I already have a long-term care policy?

Only the policies issued after June 5, 2009, can be considered partnership policies.  Not all long-term care policies issued after the date the partnership
program goes into effect will be considered partnership policies.

Partnership policies will also have to meet certain requirements under federal law.  If your current long-term care company offers partnership policies, then you might be permitted a period of time to exchange your current long-term care policy for a partnership policy with the same company. Any company offering partnership policies shall offer exchanges to qualifying policyholders.

What happens if I purchase a long-term care partnership policy and move to another state?

If you move to another state that participates in the partnership program
and they also accept the reciprocal agreement, then you could get credit from
that state’s Medicaid spend down requirements. Your policy would still have value even if you do not qualify for a partnership policy. If you move to a state that does not participate in the partnership program or does not accept the reciprocal agreement, then you would not be given credit toward that state’s Medicaid spend down requirements. You might want to take that into consideration before moving to another state.

For a complete copy of the 127 page brochure, please click HERE.

Source: Commonwealth of Kentucky, Public Protection Cabinet, Department of Insurance – Long-Term Care Insurance Guide 2012-2013

For additional information about Kentucky long-term care insurance plans, please submit your information:

[contact-form] [contact-field label=”Name” type=”name” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Email” type=”email” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Phone Number” type=”text” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Household” type=”select” required=”true” options=”Live Alone,Married,Domestic Partnership,Live with sibling or other relative” /] [/contact-form]

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Georgia Long-Term Care Partnership Program Information

Medicaid: How to Protect Your Family’s Future with a Georgia Long-Term Care Partnership PolicyGA LTCi Partnership Brochure

The Georgia Long-Term Care Partnership is designed to reward Georgians who plan ahead for their future LTC needs. The Long-Term Care Partnership is an innovative partnership between Georgia and private insurers of LTC insurance
policies. A qualified Long-Term Care Partnership policy goes above and beyond traditional LTC insurance.  Partnership and non-partnership LTC insurance policies are similar. However, the Long-Term Care Partnership policies have the added benefit of allowing policy holders to protect a portion of their assets, such as income and resources, if they choose to apply for Medicaid.  The added benefits of a Long-Term Care Partnership policy are asset protection, exemption from Estate Recovery and reciprocity among other Partnership states.

Dollar-for-Dollar Asset Protection

This feature provides dollar-for-dollar asset protection for every dollar that a Long-Term Care Partnership policy pays out in benefits, a dollar of assets can be protected from the LTC Medicaid asset limit.

When determining long-term Medicaid eligibility, any assets up to the amount the Long-Term Care Partnership policy paid in benefit will be disregarded.
The Long-Term Care Partnership insurance policy does not have to be exhausted before asset protection is allowed.

For a full copy of the Georgia Department of Community Health Long-Term Care Partnership brochure, please click the picture above.

Source: Georgia Department of Community Health Georgia Long-Term Care Partnership: Connecting Georgians to Long-Term Care Insurance

For additional information about Georgia long-term care insurance plans, please submit your information:

[contact-form] [contact-field label=”Name” type=”name” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Email” type=”email” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Phone Number” type=”text” required=”true” /] [contact-field label=”Household” type=”radio” required=”true” options=”Live alone,Married,Domestic partnership,Live with sibling or other relative” /] [/contact-form]

What is a “Shortened Benefit Period” in a long-term care insurance policy?

Shortened Benefit Period = A non-forfeiture option that reduces the benefit period but retains the full daily maximums applicable until death.  The period of time for which benefits are paid will be shorter.

For example, you buy a policy for three years of coverage with a $150 daily benefit, but if you let the policy lapse, the benefit period is reduced to one year, with full daily benefits paid.  The exact amount of the reduction depends upon how much premium you have paid on the policy.  Unlike extended term benefits, which must be used in a certain amount of time after the lapse, you can use shortened benefits at any time after you let the premium lapse (until death).

What does “personal care” mean in a long-term care insurance policy?

Personal Care ( Custodial care) = Care to help individuals meet personal needs such as bathing, dressing and eating.  Someone without professional training may provide care.

What Does “Non-Forfeiture Benefits” Mean in a Long-Term Care Insurance Policy?

Non-Forfeiture Benefits = A policy feature that returns at least part of the premiums to you if you cancel your policy or let it lapse.

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