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As more people consider retiring abroad, questions are arising about how an overseas retirement will affect long-term care insurance benefits. If you are planning to relocate out of the country and want to purchase or already have long-term care insurance, the best advice is to read the fine print on your policy.
Not all long-term care insurance policies cover care in other countries, and even if care is covered, the benefits are often more limited. Some companies will pay benefits overseas, but for a lesser amount than if you are getting care in the United States. For example, one insurer pays up to 50 percent of the nursing home benefit purchased for care received outside the United States. Other companies provide full benefits, but for a limited time (for example, one year). Once you reach the limit, you’ll have to move back to the U.S. to continue your remaining coverage. Still other companies limit both the benefit and the time covered, or they may cover you only if you relocate to an English-speaking country.
To find out whether your policy covers long-term care in other countries, first look at the exclusions. Next look for a section called "international benefits" or "out of country coverage." If your policy does limit care overseas, you shouldn't cancel it immediately because it can be hard to get coverage again. Talk to your insurance agent, attorney or financial advisor first. Instead of cancelling, it may make sense to lower your premium by reducing your benefits.
For more information on what to consider before moving to another country, click here.
For more about long-term care insurance, click here.