A record $10.3 billion in claims was paid last year by the nation's long-term care insurance companies, according to the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.
Benefits were paid on more than 303,000 policies.
“The industry passed the $10 billion mark for the first time,” said Jesse Slome, director of the association, a national advocacy organization.
According to the association, in 2017, total claims amounted to $9.2 billion paid to about 295,000 individuals.
The annual study reports claims paid to policyholders who have a traditional, health-based long-term care insurance policy.
"These are the majority of long-term care insurance policies held by over 7 million Americans," Slome explained. "Traditional long-term care insurance pays when care is needed at home, in assisted living communities or in a skilled nursing home environment."
LTCi was a very popular product during the 1990s, but several insurers found financial trouble once clients started cashing in their benefits. Since then, many insurers have sought large premium hikes to stay on top of LTCi costs.
According to the association, the actual number of policy claimants who received benefits during 2018 will exceed the 303,000 number.
"The association reports claimants based on a fixed date for consistency," Slome noted. "The total value of benefits paid is undoubtedly larger because today there are thousands of individuals who own linked benefit life insurance or annuity policies that can also provide LTC benefits. Some of these may have already started paying LTC claims.”
InsuranceNewsNet Senior Editor John Hilton has covered business and other beats in more than 20 years of daily journalism. John may be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @INNJohnH.
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