The best way to pay for medical bills, hospice care, long-term care and nursing facilities for aging parents may be as simple as selling life insurance policy.
Reverse Mortgage, Life Insurance Policies, and Medigap Plans for a Better Future
- Reverse mortgage: Reverse mortgage is often working for those who own their home and need cash to pay expenses. These types of mortgages typically take 90 days and usually leave an individual in a position where they don’t have to deal with selling their house at end-of-life and provide for a way to enjoy or have a quality of life that they could not without the cash afforded by a reverse mortgage.
- Life insurance policies: Life insurance policies could potentially have a cash value and many insurance companies will allow you to take a loan against that cash value without creating a taxable event. You can pay the expenses that you need to obtain and maintain your quality-of-life. Some newer life insurance policies have a mechanism designed to pay monthly payments as required for a palliative care, nursing home care, and living expenses not expected.
- The best way to pay for medical bills, hospice care, long-term care and nursing facilities for aging parents may be as simple as selling life insurance policy.
Best Way to Pay for Medical Bills, Hospice care, Long-Term Care and Nursing Facilities for Aging Parents May be as Simple as Selling Life Insurance Policy
You may be asking “how do I get cash our of my life insurance policy to help pay medical bills?” Selling your life insurance policy to cover medical expenses may also be an option as there is an increased demand from investors because the markets are so soft that they will pay a premium for your life insurance policy today, and when you pass they collect the benefits. One of the positive things about this as it also lowers your monthly expenses because they will typically take on the burden of paying the life insurance premiums as well allowing you to get needed cash upfront from something you’ve already paid for instead of waiting until you’re passing and letting your family deal with your estate and or your life insurance company to make the payment, and pay back any accumulated bills.The best way to pay for medical bills, hospice care, long-term care and nursing facilities for aging parents may be as simple as selling life insurance policy.
State programs: Many states have senior programs that will help augment or offset some of these expenses for low-income people if you have no assets and qualify. If you’re on Medicaid, you may also be eligible for additional benefits in your state that would be something you would want to discuss with the department of insurance or housing in aging.
Medical loans and personal assets: Medical credits are often taken by families for short-term needs. However it will increase or potentially cause a problem on your passing and leave your estate open-ended, which will then have to be covered by any real property or assets owned by the state prior to your beneficiaries receiving anything; as well as causing a lengthy probate or payout process depending on what country you’re in and what your particular situation may be.
Selling personal assets and family heirlooms are typically the last thing people want to do, but desperate times sometimes require extreme measures. However, you will want to do as much planning as possible so you don’t have to fire-sell those assets and take even a lower or reduced value because of the sense of urgency; so we suggest as much advanced planning as you can possibly do.
Medigap and supplemental medical insurance plans are private health insurance plans offered to supplement Medicare.
Medigap is an extra health insurance that you buy from a private company to pay for health care-related expenses not covered by Original Medicare. These include services such as co-payments, deductibles, and health care if you travel outside the U.S. Medigap policies don’t include long-term dental care, vision care, hearing aids, eyeglasses, or private-duty nursing. Most plans do not cover prescription drugs.
The best way to pay for medical bills, hospice care, long-term care and nursing facilities for aging parents may be as simple as selling life insurance policy.
However, the best medi-gap insurance plan is the one that is well planned for. Many people find as they age that all the planning they did years prior with insurance, Medigap, and retirement savings and life insurance still leaves them to pay for outside medical care, hospice or palliative care, or nursing facility that’s not covered by any of the planning they did prior. They need an alternative way to pay those expenses.
What is the Difference Between Medigap and Supplemental Insurance?
Medigap insurance provides coverage for many of the co-pays and some of the co-insurance related to Medicare-covered hospital, skilled nursing facility, home health care, ambulance, durable medical equipment, and doctor charges. Medigap’s name is derived from the notion that it exists to cover the difference or “gap” between the expenses reimbursed to providers by Medicare Parts A and B for the preceding named services and the total amount allowed to be charged for those services by the United States Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). As of 2006, 18% of Medicare beneficiaries were covered by a Medigap policy. Public-option Part C Medicare Advantage health plans and private employee retiree insurance provides a similar supplemental role for almost all other Medicare beneficiaries not dual eligible for Medicaid.
Some Medigap policies also offer coverage for services that original Medicare doesn’t cover, like medical care when you are abroad, or outside the United States of America. If you have original Medicare, and you buy a Medigap policy, Medicare will pay its share of the Medicare-approved amount for covered health care costs. Then your Medigap policy pays it’s dividend.
Medicare Advantage vs Medigap Insurance
A Medigap insurance policy is different from a Medicare Advantage Plan. Medicare Advantage plans are ways to get Medicare benefits, while a Medigap policy only supplements your original Medicare benefits.
Standard Medigap plans are labeled A through N, and offer different levels of health coverage. Plans E, H, I, and J are no longer available to new subscribers.
Medigap Insurance May Cover:
When a specialist participates in Medigap, they receive a higher benefit from nib than they would ordinarily receive in exchange for their agreement not to charge nib customers an out-of-pocket expense.
This higher benefit is paid if the nib Medigap schedule covers the services being claimed, your health cover includes the hospital service being requested, and the specialist agrees to participate in the Medigap Scheme for your procedure.
When Can You Buy Medicare Insurance and Include a Medigap Plan?
Medicare eligibility starts for most Americans when they turn 65 years old. Those who have been on Social Security eligibility for 24 months can also qualify for Medicare Part A and Part B. A person must be enrolled in part A and B of Medicare before they can enroll in a Medigap plan. When a person turns 65 – or if they are older and new to Medicare Part B – they become eligible for Medigap open enrollment. This period starts on the first day of the month you turn 65 and lasts for 6 months. During this time, a person can buy any Medigap plan regardless of their health.
This is different than if someone is losing group coverage or retiring. When this occurs, the person is eligible to exercise his or her “Guarantee Issue” right. With a Medigap guarantee issue right a person can buy a Medigap Plan A, B, C, F, K, or L that’s sold by any insurance company in their state. Also, the insurance company cannot deny or raise the premium due to past or current health conditions. Even, the insurance company must cover any pre-existing conditions. Instead of exercising the guarantee issue right a person can opt to go through the underwriting process in order to buy a *plan G or N Once a person is outside their open enrollment period and or guarantee issue they can change their Medigap plan but they will be subject to health underwriting by the insurance company they are applying with.
It is also important to know that monthly premiums apply, and plans may not be canceled by the insurer for any reason other than non-payment of premiums/membership dues. Furthermore, a single Medigap plan may cover only one person. Finally, Medigap insurance is not compatible with a Medicare Advantage plan. You cannot have both a Medicare supplement and a Medicare Advantage plan at the same time. You can only have a Medigap plan if you are still in Medicare Part A and Part B and have not replaced your coverage with a Medicare Advantage Part C coverage.
Medigap Available Under the Age of 65 to Some on Medicare
Recipients of social security disability insurance (SSDI) benefits or patients with end-stage renal (ESRD) are entitled to Medicare coverage regardless of age but are not automatically allowed to purchase Medigap policies unless they are at least 65. Under federal law, insurers are not required to sell Medigap policies to people under 65, and even if they do, they may use medical screening. However, a slight majority of states require insurers to offer at least one kind of Medigap policy to at least some Medicare recipients in that age group. Of these countries, 25 need that Medigap policies be offered to all Medicare recipients. In California, and Vermont, Medigap policies are not available to end-stage patients. Part D deductible will go up for about 20% of Americans to over $150.00 a year. That’s close to a 50% increase in 2016.
8 Things You Need to Know about Medicare:
- You must have Medicare part A and B.
- If you have a Medicare Advantage Plan, you can apply for a Medigap policy, but make sure you can leave the Medicare Advantage Plan before your Medigap policy begins.
- You pay the private insurance company a monthly premium for your Medigap policy in addition to the monthly Part B premium that you pay to Medicare.
- A Medigap policy only covers one person. If you and your spouse both want Medigap coverage, you’ll each have to buy separate systems.
- You can buy a Medigap policy from any insurance company that’s licensed in your state to sell one.
- Any standardized Medigap policy is guaranteed renewable even if you have health problems. This means the insurance company can’t cancel your Medigap policy as long as you pay the premium.
- Some Medigap policies sold in the past cover prescription drugs, but Medigap policies sold after January 1, 2006, aren’t allowed to include prescription drug coverage. If you want prescription drug coverage, you can join a Medicare prescription drug plan(PLAN D)
- It’s illegal for anyone to sell you a Medigap policy if you have a medi-care medical saving account plan(MSA).
Types of Insurance Policies that are not Medigap Insurance Plans
- Medicare Advantage Plans (like an HMO, PPO, or Private Fee-for-Service Plan)
- Medicare Prescription Drug Plans
- Employer or union plans, including the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program (FEHBP)
- Veterans’ benefits
- Long-term care insurance policies
- Indian Health Service, Tribal, and Urban Indian Health plan
Cancellation of the Medigap Plan or Subscription
If you decide to drop your entire Medigap policy, you need to be careful about the timing. For example, you may want a completely different Medigap policy—not just your old Medigap policy without the prescription drug coverage. Or you might decide to switch to a MedicareAdvantage Plan that offers prescription drug coverage.
You have to pay a late enrollment penalty when you join a new Medicare drug plan if any of the following conditions or reasons are met:
- You drop your entire Medigap policy and the drug coverage wasn’t creditability prescription job coverage
- You go 63 days or more in a row before your new Medicare drug coverage begins
Change in Medigap Plan Under The Medigap Scheme
If nib reduces amounts paid to specialists under the Medigap Scheme, then nib will provide 60 days’ written notice of the reduction on this website and will also write to those members who have claimed under their insurance policies for any of the affected procedures in the previous 2 years where that procedure was part of an ongoing course of treatment (for example, dialysis) providing 60 days’ written notice of the change.
How Much Does Medigap Pay Toward Specialist Fees?
The Government has a list of prices for services (such as surgical procedures) known as the MedicareBenefits schedule(MBS) If you are treated by a specialist, Medicare pays 75% of the MBS fee, and nib pays the remaining 25%, provided the procedure is not excluded from your cover. Some specialists charge more than the MBS. If this happens, you have to pay the difference between the MBS and what the specialist costs.
Medigap Scheme to Pay Specialists for Medical Services
Our Medigap Scheme means that we will agree to pay an extra amount to your specialist in addition to the standard 25% for services covered under our Medigap Scheme. We’ve built up a network of doctors and specialists who may charge us directly, at no additional cost to you.
Specialists who are registered for Medigap decide on a case-by-case basis if they are going to participate in the Scheme and charge no out-of-pocket for your procedure. For this reason, it’s important to ask if your specialist is willing to join in the Medigap Scheme for you.
Medigap Vs. Medicare Advantage: Which Is Better?
Like any large insurance enterprise, Medicare is confusing. Insurance companies will give you hundreds of pages of explanation, but luckily, the basics of the program aren’t difficult to grasp. As the cliché goes, however, the devil is in the details.
- Medigap coverage will protect people who buy traditional Medicare against many of the costs described above. In return, Medigap charges a premium that is in addition to what you already pay for Medicare Parts A (many people get this free), B and D.
Just to make life genuinely confusing, the various options offered by Medigap are also sorted by letter. Your choices are Plans A, B, C, D, F, G, K, L, M and N. What these plans include is standardized by Medicare. The price for the services varies from one company to another, so it’s worth shopping around. Joseph Graves, insurance agent and Founder of “I Hate Buying Insurance,” says many people enroll in Plan F, the most expensive choice, because it covers nearly all the gaps. A person with Plan F coverage will have few or no out of pocket expenses. A healthy person living in Florida would pay about $289 per month for Plan F coverage as of 2014, according to Graves.
Medigap policies will cover you whenever you see any doctor or facility that takes Medicare. If the doctor or service does not accept Medicare patients, Medigap will cover that service. The best way to pay for medical bills, hospice care, long-term care and nursing facilities for aging parents may be as simple as selling life insurance policy.
Medicare Advantage vs Medigap Policy -Which is Better for You?
It is illegal for an insurance company to sell you both a Medicare Advantage and a Medigap policy. Three things to consider before choosing which one to get:
- Cost: Medigap coverage usually has a higher monthly premium, but could result in lower out-of-pocket expenses than some Medicare Advantage plans. Medicare Advantage plans, on the other hand, generally cost less and cover more services, which can be the better option for your budget.
- Choice: Medicare Advantage plans limit you to the doctors and facilities within the HMO or PPO, and may or may not cover any out-of-network care. Traditional Medicare and Medigap policies include you if you go to any doctor or facility that accepts Medicare. If you require particular specialists or hospitals, check whether they are covered by the plan you select.
- Lifestyle: Medicare Advantage often plans only operate with a specific If you’re a snowbird living in more than one state throughout the year, traditional Medicare plus Medigap is probably a better choice than an Advantage plan. This may also be true if you travel frequently: Some Medigap plans provide coverage when going outside of the United States and cover you in all 50 states; Advantage plans do not.
A particular note to family members reading this and looking for help: there are a few things that you probably should start planning for if you have an elderly parent or family member that could potentially be going through this in the future. Talk to a tax advisor, because many benefits can probably be sheltered if you plan for it. However, the window is typically 2+ years, so you really need to have some potentially serious (and possibly even severe) conversations with family members, since planning is very important at this stage of life to maximize all your family and parents have done throughout their lives to save up for this particular season they are entering.
To determine if your father qualifies as your dependent for this purpose, refer to Whose Medical Expenses Can You Include and Nursing Home in Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses. For any latest information concerning insurance, contact the nearest MEDI-GAP broker near you.
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Medicare.gov. (2017). What’s Medicare Supplement Insurance (Medigap)? | Medicare.gov. [online] Available at: https://www.medicare.gov/supplement-other-insurance/medigap/whats-medigap.html [Accessed 17 Oct. 2017].
Money. (2017). How do I afford health care in retirement?. [online] Available at: http://money.cnn.com/retirement/guide/retirementliving_healthcare.moneymag/index8.htm [Accessed 17 Oct. 2017].
Nib.com.au. (2017). Medigap Scheme and private health insurance | nib. [online] Available at: https://www.nib.com.au/health-information/going-to-hospital/nib-medigap [Accessed 17 Oct. 2017].
Parker, T. (2017). Medigap Vs. Medicare Advantage: Which Is Better?. [online] Investopedia. Available at: http://www.investopedia.com/articles/personal-finance/071014/medigap-vs-medicare-advantage-which-better.asp [Accessed 17 Oct. 2017].