Single Women Need Different Long Term Care Insurance Plan


Last updated 5/14/2015 at 7:13pm | View PDF

Women in their 50s and 60s who are single today or concerned about being alone in the future will greatly benefit from affordable long term care planning, according to an industry advocate.

"There are millions of women over age 50 who are single, divorced or widowed, and most married women will outlive their male spouses making long term care planning essential," said Jesse Slome, director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance. "Planning for women who are alone today or may be tomorrow should be different than planning undertaken by couples. Unfortunately, that's often not the case."

About 70% of nursing home residents are women, and over two-thirds of new long-term care insurance claims are paid to women, mostly for care received at home. However, the long-term care cost is the reason many single women don't consider insurance protection.

"Single women often have lower incomes, less retirement savings and the prospect of lower Social Security and pension benefits than men, so affordability is a primary and very valid concern," Slome explained.

Many insurance agents merely recommend 50% of the plan they recommend to a married couple, according to Slome. "A married couple, both age 60 will pay $3,200-per-year for $400,000 of combined benefits," he said. "A single woman, also age 60, will pay $2,950 for $200,000 because single women pay more and don't get discounts offered to couples. For many single women, that's simply not within their available budget."

Single women are advised to compare insurance rates. "Each insurance company sets their own premium costs and there can be sizable differences especially for women buying coverage on their own," Slome said.

The association has six educational guides that can be read online, including a number of educational videos. For more information, call (818) 597-3227 or visit


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