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AALTCI: LTC Coverage Costs Vary by More Than 40%

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Rates for comparable long term care insurance products from leading carriers can vary from 41% to 48%, according to the American Association for Long Term Care Insurance.

Rates for comparable long term care (LTC) insurance products from leading carriers can vary from 41% to 48%, according to the American Association for Long Term Care Insurance (AALTCI).

AALTCI, Westlake Village, Calif., has based that conclusion on an analysis of average rates for 11 popular LTC products.

About 78% of LTC policies are purchased by couples that want to cover one or both spouses, AALTCI says.

The average 55-year-old couple buying a joint policy can expect to pay $2,350 per year combined for about $338,000 of current benefits, or $169,000 for each spouse, according to AALTCI.

If the 55-year-old insureds did not qualify for preferred health discounts, their annual cost would be about $325 higher, AALTCI estimates.

The association found that a 55-year old single individual would pay about

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$1,480 annually for comparable coverage.

The average age for an individual LTC insurance purchaser is 57, and 76% of purchases are made for individuals ages 45 to 64, according to AALTCI.

AALTCI also looked at rates for policies with the relatively new shared-care option, which allows two policyholders to each have access to a combined pool of benefits.

With the shared-care option, a 65-year-old couple of average health could expect to pay $4,660 per year for about $338,000 of current combined benefits, according to AALTCI.

- Trevor Thomas