This has been a busy week, traveling to Washington DC to meet with congressmen and staffers on Medicaid and LTC issues.
Many were not aware of the Partnership between Medicaid and LTC insurance which came about as part of the Deficit Reduction Act of 2005. Partnership is an incentive from the government to encourage people of modest means to purchase at least some LTC insurance.
The time will come when the purchasers of partnership policies may need LTC services. After the LTC insurance has paid for care, if more cash flow is needed, or the policy is exhausted, it may be necessary to apply for Medicaid. Instead of being required to spend-down to Medicaid impoverishment, Medicaid will ignore assets equal to what the partnership LTC insurance policy has already paid out. If citizens take some personal responsibility for their LTC, then the government will reward them if more care is needed.
Unfortunately, many states do not promote this program, to their financial loss. Texas has a wonderful website of http://www.OwnYourFutureTexas.org and the state of Connecticut sends state employees out to public venues to host seminars on the Partnership concept. I am told that Connecticut can document 10% of the attendees purchasing some partnership LTC insurance and an additional number decide that Medicaid planning is not in their best interest.
While in Washington I pointed out that many requests legislators receive involve a concession of some type to possibly receive a tax benefit later. This program requires the government to give away nothing now, to reap the benefit of citizens paying at least some of their own LTC costs in the future. It is good for everyone. I asked for legislators to consider promotion of this concept to save protect Medicaid from future budget shortfalls.
After making these points with Congressman Paul Ryan Wednesday, I saw in the Green Bay, WI newspaper on Friday an article about him where he mentions taking the first steps toward fixing a serious problem: a debt-ridden federal government facing an onslaught of retiring baby boomers draining entitlement programs.
The timing of this article, of just what I spoke to him about, was probably a coincidence. However, congressmen need input from people in the various fields that affect government programs to know the best way to improve them.
Now that you know what the partnership program is, and how it can protect assets in the event you have exhausted or need more cash flow than your partnership LTC insurance policy provides, wy would you wait to investigate it? Policies are becoming less generous as the insurance companies are finding more and more people collecting on them. Medical underwriting is becoming much more stringent – do NOT wait until you can no longer qualify to purchase this coverage. Call TheLongTermCareGuy.com, Romeo Raabe, at (920) 884-3030 or (800) 219-9203 to investigate. Most people do not need as much LTC insurance as they might initially suspect.