Regal Blog


Prepared before a crisis strikes, Long Term Care, Care ManagerDecisions about Long Term Care (LTC) for a loved one can be emotionally and financially draining if there has been no prior discussion or provision made in advance for necessary healthcare services not covered under Medicare or Medicaid. It is so difficult for a family to handle the tough decisions that have to be made under duress when a loved one suddenly suffers from a stroke or severe illness, disease, dementia, and might even be near death.

If Mom or Dad, or a beloved spouse becomes incapacitated or cognitively impaired, how do family members divide up the duties of daily care, medication management, doctor visits, and deal with the insurance and financial details, all working together instead of taking sides? It is all too easy for children and families to quarrel when everyone thinks they know what Mom or Dad’s wishes are or feels they have the best idea about the care needed or options available. In these situations, or when there is little family close by, a Care Manager can be the ideal neutral third party or patient advocate. Care Managers are clinicians specially trained in creating, coordinating and supervising the plan of care, arranging and questioning tests, and following up with physicians while keeping everyone involved informed and engaged.

Jon Sahn, CAP, financial advisor and founder of Ascendant Planned Giving, shares how he felt a few years ago after hearing that his Mom, Dorothy, was diagnosed with lung cancer: “We had just returned from vacation. This happened so quickly without any warning. I began to think about how do other families react to such news? What steps did they take once the diagnosis was given? Who makes the plan of care?  One brother lives in New York, I live in Florida and my other brother lives in California – is it fair to my New York brother to carry most of the burden? Who will be there in Mom’s home with her and tend to her needs?  Who takes the lead communicating with the medical team?”

This poignant example illustrates the necessity of anticipating and addressing the need for Long Term Care (LTC) before personal disaster or a medical emergency strikes. In fact, as Jon points out, “Many people do not realize there are many financial options that can provide for LTC. The qualified LTC insurance policy is an excellent wealth preservation tool that provides many tax benefits, and can be purchased with provisions for a Care Manager.”

A Certified Care Manager (CCM) from a licensed and accredited Home Health Agency will assess the patient and advise as to the appropriate level of care needed, then arrange for and monitor services. They act as the patient’s advocate, researching the best options and resources available to meet not only the medical goals, but provide consistency and compassion while helping the patient hold onto their dignity and as much independence as possible. They will then assist the family in deciphering the insurance benefits and handling the claims, being sure to maximize any and all LTC benefits.

CONTACT US: When sitting down with your trusted financial advisers, Long Term Care Insuranceplease remember to discuss Long Term Care! Regal’s professionals are not financial planners or attorneys or CPAs, but we are clinicians and patient advocates who understand that long term care and private duty nursing is an integral part of the puzzle needed to allow Seniors to age well and comfortably in the home. Regal’s care managers and caregivers provide a broad spectrum of home health services to families and individuals tailored to meet their specific needs which are affordable and may qualify for certain financial breaks or tax benefits. We will also help you maximize any LTC insurance benefits you have! Contact Ferial Andre, RN, CCM, CDP, for more information at 561-499-8382 or ferialandre@regalcares.com.

This article is not intended as medical, legal, or financial advice.

Jon Sahn, CAP is the Founder and President of Ascendant Planned Giving, Inc. Since 1996 Jon has been helping individuals and business owners protect their wealth. He utilizes charitable giving and insurance strategies to maximize the financial impact his clients can have on themselves, their families and their communities. Jon protects families and creates legacies by utilizing life insurance, long term care insurance, annuity products and multi-generational philanthropy. He can be reached at Jon@AscendantPG.com or 561-716-0800. 



Underestimated Tax Benefits of Long Term Care Insurance

Friday, February 5, 2016 @ 07:02 PM

LTC Tax BreaksDid you know that benefit payments from your Long Term Care Policy might be free from federal income tax? If you have a qualified long term care policy, the payments you receive will be considered reimbursements for medical expenses under health insurance coverage. For 2015 or 2016 this could be up to $340 a day! However benefits that exceed both the cap and the actual LTC costs are generally considered taxable by the IRS.

Of course there are differences between qualified and non-qualified plans that make one tax deductible and the other not. Check with your certified LTC professional. If your LTC policy is qualified, the premiums can be treated as medical expenses on Schedule A. Check with your CPA because there are age based limits, but you can count premiums for a spouse and dependents, and combine them with health and dental insurance premiums, insurance co-payments, out-of-pocket prescription costs, etc.

John Ruhl, Managing Director of the Ruhl Financial Group of Northwestern Mutual, points out that, “Tax breaks are not why you buy a long term care insurance policy. But if you do so, be sure it is a qualified policy, because this lowers the effective cost and makes better coverage more affordable.”

Also consider that there are cost effective ways to fund that LTC insurance premium with a tax free 1035 exchange. John advises, “A little known fact is that you are able to 1035 exchange (transfer out) gains from an annuity tax free if directed toward paying LTC premiums. Great way to use normally taxable income to your benefit by having it come out without taxes!”

You may want to have a look at our prior article “Tap These Tax Benefits and Overlooked Deductions for Seniors’ – click here: http://wp.me/P5l8fP-zM

Regal reminds you to always check with a financial advisor or accounting professional before making any decisions or taking action, but be pro-active and do not leave tax benefits on the table! Especially when it comes to Long Term Care, Home Health and Skilled Nursing Services!!

Contact Us: While you are sitting down with your trusted accountant and financial advisor at tax time, please remember to discuss Long Term Care! Regal’s patient advocates understand that long term care and private duty nursing is an integral part of the puzzle needed to allow Seniors to age well and comfortably in the home. Regal can provide care managers and caregivers who offer a broad spectrum of home health and skilled nursing services to families and individuals tailored to meet their specific needs which are affordable and may qualify for certain financial breaks or tax benefits. We will also help you maximize any Long Term Care Insurance benefits you have! Contact Ferial Andre, RN, CCM, CDP, for more information at 561-499-8382 or ferialandre@regalcares.com.
This article is not intended as medical, financial or legal advice.

John H. Ruhl, CLTC, is the Managing Director of The Ruhl Group, and Financial Advisor with Northwestern Mutual. A graduate of the University of North Florida, he has worked in the financial services industry in South Florida since 1999. John’s areas of expertise lie in risk management and insurance planning, investments, wealth accumulation and preservation, as well as retirement and estate planning. John is an award winning Certified Long Term Care Consultant, and a member of the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors. John is a proud Trustee Member of the Boca Raton Chamber, and a Chairman Level Member of the Delray Beach Chamber. John can be contacted at 561-962-2927 or john.ruhl@nmfn.com.