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If you are thinking about long-term care insurance, note this

Given the roller-coaster ride that has centrally marked the stock market in recent years, it is eminently understandable that many soon-to-be retirees and persons already embarked on their post-career lives fret over market dislocations when they review their so-called nest eggs.

Many of those people should be more concerned about their health than they are about their money.

As noted by a recent article on long-term care, it is an extended stay in a care facility that eats up savings more quickly for most Americans than does the occasional downward churning of the stock market.

Statistics like these -- more than $80,000 annually for one year of care in a nursing home; approximately $184,000 for round-the-clock home care -- are what fuel consumers’ close scrutiny of long-term care insurance companies and the policies they offer. Although millions of people would like such a policy, the premiums that secure their protections are prohibitively pricey for many Americans.

For those worried consumers, optimistic news that is centrally imbued in the findings of a recent study focused on long-term care should buoy their spirits. Researchers from Boston College state that LTC coverage actually makes financial sense for only a small minority of the unmarried people it studied.

Those are the richest individuals. If you don’t qualify as one of them, say researchers, it might make more sense for you to just save the money you are thinking of forking over for care premiums and rely instead on Medicare if you do need care in the future.

The reason: Most people who need LTC coverage don’t actually sit in nursing homes for unduly lengthy periods. Evidence shows, rather, that many people need care for only shorter periods, which are compensated for in many cases through Medicare benefits.

Of course, it can be a bit tricky and complicated to objectively analyze every relevant consideration relating to health care and the aging process. That can be especially true when health care looms large in estate planning concerns.

A proven estate planning attorney -- especially one with experience in elder law and government programs like Medicare and Medicaid -- can help a client sort through things and implement a soundly tailored and effective plan for the future.

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