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Don't make these mistakes if you buy long-term-care insurance

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Are you thinking of buying long-term-care insurance in California? While the policy can be very helpful when you need it, there are a number of mistakes you must avoid while you shop for the right one.

First of all, you don't want to put it off for too long. Like other types of insurance--life insurance, for example--the price of the policy climbs as you get older. Buying at a younger age, perhaps before you even think you need the policy, can help you get it for less. Just make sure that you know if the rates will change.

Next, though price is important, it shouldn't be the only thing you look at. You also need to look at how much the policy offers in terms of coverage and what exemptions it has. If you can pay slightly more to get twice the coverage, paying more may actually be a better financial choice than finding the lowest price on the market.

If you are married, you also don't want to overlook a shared policy. This is not right for everyone, but some policies can offer far better coverage without a drastic increase in price if both you and your spouse are listed. Always look into every option that you have.

Finally, you always need to consider the fine print and the rate of inflation. Make sure that you have enough coverage for when you really need it and that nothing is going to take you by surprise.

Even if you find great coverage, there is still the chance that your claim could be denied, so make sure that you know your legal options after making the purchase.

Source: The Wall Street Journal, "Mistakes to Avoid When Shopping for Long-Term-Care Insurance," Anne Tergesen, accessed March. 27, 2015

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