There’s a good chance you’ve heard that long-term care insurance should be a part of everyone’s financial planning.
A long-term care insurance policy helps pay for the care you need when you become unable to care for yourself. It can protect your family's financial future and your investments and savings, and is therefore an important element in a well designed health insurance strategy.
What long-term care insurance covers
Long-term insurance benefits pay for services that include personal care such as bathing, dressing, eating, using the bathroom, moving around, or getting in or out of a bed or a chair. The help could be administered at your home or a variety of other facilities.
Long-term insurance rates vary depending on individual factors:
• How old you are when you apply for it
• The maximum amount that the policy will cover per day
• The highest number of days, months, or years that the policy will provide benefits
• The lifetime maximum amount
• Any options that you choose (increasing benefits with inflation, for instance)
Since most long-term policies require medical underwriting, you may not even qualify for the protection if you are in bad health. Sometimes, however, you can get group coverage that requires no underwriting, or you might be able to purchase an individual policy with limited coverage or at higher rates.
Good news from the IRS on long-term care insurance
The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has announced that it is increasing the amount taxpayers can deduct from their 2016 income for long-term care insurance premiums.
Premiums for qualified long-term care insurance policies are tax deductible to the extent that they, along with other unreimbursed medical expenses, exceed 10 percent of the insured's adjusted gross income, or 7.5 percent for taxpayers 65 and older (through 2016).
The premiums, which are the amount a policyholder pays the insurance company, are deductible for the taxpayer, spouse, and other dependents. Self-employed individuals take note: Your rules are different. You can take the amount of the premium as a deduction just as long as you made a net profit. And your medical expenses do not have to exceed a certain percentage of your income.
One caveat, depending on the taxpayer’s age, there is a limit on how much of the premium may be deducted. The IRS does not consider any premium amounts for the year that are above these limits to be a medical expense.
Here are the deductibility limits for 2016:
Age before the end of the year
40 or less: $390
41 to 50: $730
51 to 60: $1,460
61 to 70: $3,900
71 and up: $4,870
How to receive the long-term care insurance tax deduction:
You must itemize your deductions on your federal return to receive the long-term care insurance tax deduction. Your long term care insurance premiums are added in to your other unreimbursed medical expenses. To get a tax deduction, you must have unreimbursed medical expenses that exceed 10% (7.5% for 65 and older) of your adjusted gross income. If so, you may deduct up to the age-based limits shown above.
We can help you select the right long-term care insurance
It’s never a bad time to review your financial plan, and with the IRS giving you an added incentive, you should take the time to consider long-term care insurance as part of your plan for 2017.
Contact American Insuring Group online, or call us at (800) 947-1270 or (610) 775-3848, and get all the details on this essential coverage.