The prospect of needing long term care may be far from your mind today, but circumstances can change. A long term care event can happen at any age, and the potential financial and emotional strain that comes with it can have an impact on you and your loved ones. Unfortunately, traditional health insurance plans—including TRICARE For Life—do not pay for the chronic, ongoing assistance with daily living that is most often associated with long term care.
In fact, even the long term care benefits offered through the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) are tied to specific triggers, including service-connected disability, available funding, and even your ability to contribute to the cost of care. Long term care can be expensive, and service members often rely on the VA to cover the associated costs. Depending on your eligibility status in the VA program, the level of coverage available to you may not be enough. For this reason, you may want to research standalone long term care insurance like a plan offered through the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP).
The FLTCIP—created specifically for the federal family—offers active duty and retired uniformed service members the opportunity to help take control of their future long term care needs with long term care insurance. Designed to be both comprehensive and flexible, the FLTCIP provides insurance coverage for qualified long term care services. Certain family members, or qualified relatives, are also eligible to apply even if you do not. Qualified relatives include your spouse, domestic partner, parents and parents-in-law, and adult children.
Coverage under the FLTCIP
FLTCIP 3.0, the current plan available to new applicants, offers comprehensive coverage, including a stay-at-home benefit and home care provided by friends and family*, with added premium stability.
One thing that makes FLTCIP 3.0 unique is the premium stabilization feature. This built-in, innovative feature is designed to reduce the potential need for large future premium increases—a concern many consumers wanted the long term care insurance industry to address. Under certain conditions, this amount may be used to offset an enrollee’s future premium payments or provide a refund of premium death benefit.
The FLTCIP is designed to reimburse for qualified long term care services and can lessen or eliminate an individual’s reliance on a loved one to provide hands-on care. FLTCIP 3.0 benefits also include:
- international coverage up to 100% of the maximum lifetime benefit
- choice of a 3% automatic compound inflation option or future purchase option
- choice of a two-year, three-year, or five-year benefit period
Build a FLTCIP plan
There’s no one-size-fits-all when it comes to long term care insurance, and it’s no secret that planning for your future care can be overwhelming. The FLTCIP’s new Guided Planner was designed to simplify the process of building a FLTCIP plan that’s right for you, and it will guide you through these key considerations:
- Cost of care: Compare the national average cost of long term care with other locations in the United States. You can choose where you live, or plan to retire.
- Care options: Learn more about different care options, such as home care, assisted living facilities, and nursing homes, as well as the associated costs.
- Inflation protection: Understand the impact of inflation on the cost of care over time and see examples of how our inflation protection options can help.
Talk candidly with your family members and tell them about the FLTCIP. Starting the conversation prior to needing care can help you prepare for the unexpected.
Visit LTCFEDS.com/militaryfamily to learn more about the benefits of applying for the FLTCIP.
For personalized assistance, call 1-800-LTC-FEDS (1-800-582-3337) or TTY 1-800-843-3557 to speak with a program consultant. They are available to answer any questions you may have and can walk you step-by-step through the plan design and application process.
Note: Certain medical conditions, or combinations of conditions, will prevent some people from being approved for coverage. You need to apply to find out if you qualify for coverage under the FLTCIP.
The Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program is sponsored by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, insured by John Hancock Life & Health Insurance Company, under a group long term care insurance policy, and administered by Long Term Care Partners, LLC.
*Informal care provided by friends and family members is covered, as long as the caregiver isn’t your spouse or domestic partner and doesn’t live in your home at the time you become eligible for benefits. Benefits for covered care provided by family members are limited to 500 days.