Why Do People Choose Not To Buy Long Term Care Insurance?


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There are only a few main reasons why people choose not to buy long term care insurance after making an initial investigation into it. They are:

  • Procrastination - Since planning for the possible need for long term care is not an issue that must be dealt with immediately, but is instead planned for in advance, they tend to feel that it is something that can be bought later. As a result, the years go by and nothing is done until one day illness strikes suddenly and custodial care is needed. All of a sudden, desperate attempts are made to try to get LTCi to help offset the challenges ahead. But unfortunately, they no longer are insurable at any price and the window of opportunity is gone forever. I see this scenario played out over and over again.

  • Lack of understanding of the risks involved - Oftentimes people just can't ever see the possibility that they may need custodial care in the future like so many others do. They feel relatively healthy at the moment, and so they assume that they will probably always stay that way. They reason that their parents and many relatives died early in life and/or after a brief illness in the past, so they conclude that will most likely happen to them. They do not even want to consider what would happen if that did not happen. They don't appreciate the clear evidence that humans are living much longer these days, thanks in no small part to medical advancements that let us survive illnesses that would have killed us just a few decades ago. They ignore the fact that one out of two people alive today will need some form of long term care in the future. Interestingly, many of these people faithfully pay their homeowners insurance every year to protect against a loss by fire, flood, or some other catastrophe. And yet, the chance of that happening is so much smaller than the chance of needing long term care insurance.

  • Unfamiliar with the realities of long term care - Many people who do not see the need for LTCi have simply never come face to face with the brutal realities of how devastating a long term care illness can be to those around them, both emotionally and financially. This is often true of men since they are not usually the caregivers for relatives at home. Women on the other hand, are more likely to appreciate the special challenges and hardships that prolonged care for someone else can bring. However, people of both sexes who have not ever personally been touched by a long term care illness in their immediate family tend to underestimate it's effects.


    Duane Lipham is a Certified Long Term Care(CLTC) consultant. You can get more free information, news and articles regarding long term care and aging at The Long Term Care Consumer Guide website and The Long Term Care Review Blog .

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