As the sun begins to set on National Get Organized Month, I hope I’ve left you with some good ideas about how to get your finances, and your life, in order. But my work is not yet done. In this post, I encourage you to take a minute to think about your long term care insurance coverage and how it relates to what may come in the future. 

The first thing you can do is to make sure you’re with a good agency or broker. Many people do not know the difference between the two, so I will break it down:

  • Agency: Works directly for one insurance company
  • Broker: Sells insurance from more than one company

If you’re with an agency, verify that you’re receiving the best rates possible. If you’re with a broker, ask him or her to shop around for a better deal than you are currently getting.

Regardless of how you buy your insurance, this is a great time to see how your policies and deductibles will affect you not only this year, but beyond 2013…

Long-term care insurance is something that everybody, regardless of age or financial situation, should look into. It kicks in when the policyholder can no longer perform the seven daily activities of life, which are:

  1. Bathing and hygiene
  2. Dressing and undressing
  3. Meal Preparation and clean up
  4. Functional transfers
  5. Safe restroom use and maintaining continence
  6. Ambulation
  7. Cognitive issues

When choosing a long-term care policy, make sure to select one with an inflation or cost-of-living clause included, even if the premiums are higher. I have a client who chose a less-costly plan that did not include annual cost of living adjustments. While she is fortunate to have financial security, or any kind of long-term care insurance at all, I can easily see how her golden years would be a lot more comfortable if she had opted to pay a higher premium for better insurance.

Long-term care insurance and advanced directives may seem barely relevant to people who are young and vibrant…or at least vibrant. But if you’re getting married, having a baby or going through any other life changes, there’s no reason to leave it up to chance – and there’s so much to lose if life catches you uncovered.

Looking for a good insurance broker? I work with a lot of great professionals who can help you. If you need a referral – just ask me!

Judy Heft, Principal, Judy Heft & Associates is a professional and personal financial organizer with offices in Greenwich and Stamford. She can be contacted via email at or by phone 203-978-1858.