Long Term Disability Claims | When Cool Becomes Costly

May 20, 2008

Are you looking at age 60 and thinking about retirement? Dennis Hopper, with his ultra-dark sunglasses tells us, it's okay to get old and "dreams don't retire." It is cool to embrace aging, says Frank N. Darras, the nation's leading disability and Long-Term Care insurance lawyer.

Darras says, "The music gets you going and you think, maybe he's right. Getting old isn't so bad. Maybe I really can retire and achieve my dreams. The ad is great, Hopper is right, you need a plan." See http://www.darrasnews.com/.

With our life expectancies increasing and the boomer generation turning 60 at the rate of 4 million a year, planning for the future is critical.

Here is what you need to know:

Today's long-term care policies have been oversold, under-priced and poorly underwritten. The number of in-force LTC policyholders has increased by 21% annually, to a total of nearly eight million.

According to Darras, carriers who low-balled the market with cheap premiums to attract and gain market share have succeeded. Those same carriers are loosing their claim shirts as their overly-generous policy language and cheap pricing is costing them a fortune.

"The carriers can't change the economy; they can't change interest rates; they can't change Wall Street expectations; so they are beating down the doors of the Departments of Insurance across the country to get premium rate increases, while turning their claim departments into 'profit centers'," says Darras.

Just when aging seniors need their policies most, many LTC carriers are pricing their policyholders out of their coverage. If you can afford the increase you get the double-whammy. These same carriers make the claim process difficult, confusing and cumbersome so the claimants give up.

Do your homework, research your carrier before you purchase a LTC policy.

Darras warns, "You do not want to pay premiums for a policy where you too, could be a victim down the road. A cheap policy is no good if your carrier goes out of business or preys on seniors at claim time."

Whatever you do, when you're shopping for a Long-Term Care policy, research the insurance company's commitment to LTC. How long have they been selling their policies? How many times have they sought premium rate increases across the United States in the last ten years?

How many claim complaints have been registered against the company at the Department of Insurance?

Darras says, "Shop smart and do your homework before you buy LTC."