Many advisors have been touting the benefits of long-term care insurance to their baby boomer clients for decades. While the recent recession has arguably helped clients listen to these benefits more than ever, they certainly aren’t new.
What is new, though, is who boomer clients have begun buying such insurance for — their parents.
Norm Mindel, a principal at Forum Financial Management in Lombard, Ill., is increasingly seeing his 40- and 50-year-old clients asking about long-term care insurance for their less well-off parents. Often, this is to protect not only their parents’ estate, but their own future as well.
“Many of them have just had a relative go through being in a nursing home, and they see the devastation and the stress it causes,” Mindel said. “They’re concerned about mom and dad, and if their parents don’t have a lot of means they want to buy insurance for them.”
Phyllis Shelton, president of LTC Consultants, said that she is also seeing more and more children buying long-term care insurance for their parents. Oftentimes several siblings will split the cost of the premium, she said, though the burden of care typically falls on only one sibling, most likely the daughter.
“The parent needs to understand that if they don’t buy this insurance the child is the one that suffers, because it can rob the boomer of a career, particularly women,” Shelton said. She recommended advisors find out if long-term care insurance is in the mix for their clients’ parents.
Advisors can also emphasize this focus to shine light on the importance of boomers insuring themselves for their future care.
“What I hear now more than ever is that 20 years ago the objection was either, ‘I wont need it,’ or ‘My kids will take care of me.’ Today the boomer says, ‘I don’t ever want to put this on my kids,'" Shelton said. "It’s the most inhumane thing to saddle your children with long-term care, and today that’s why people are buying long-term care insurance.”