The Knights of Columbus are a Catholic-based Fraternal Organization offering comprehensive Long-Term Care Insurance for members and families. However, unusual policy language and lack of partnership benefits make this a questionable choice for consumers.
There are variations between the policy language and benefits between the many companies that offer Long-Term Care Insurance; however, the primary features and benefit choices are comparable from company to company. Premiums and underwriting criteria vary dramatically between insurance companies.
When comparing long-term care insurance, you should recognize the differences between the Knights of Columbus and other companies.
You must be a member, or a spouse of a member of this fraternal service organization, to apply for insurance products. The Knights of Columbus are a Catholic-based Fraternal Organization engaged in charity and are the world's largest Roman Catholic fraternal service organization. Knights of Columbus Insurance primarily sells life insurance and annuities to its members.
Knights of Columbus Features and Benefits:
- Monthly Benefit from $1500 to $15,000
- Pool of Money Established with a 3, 5, or 10 Year Benefit Periods
- Facility Only or Comprehensive Coverage Options
- Inflation Options include 3% and 5% compounded and a Future Purchase Option
- Elimination period options include 30, 90, and 180 days
- Home modifications
- Case Management
- Spousal discounts
- Shared Spousal Benefit Option (limits options and selection means you lose spousal discounts)
- 'Usual and Customary Language.' The Knights of Columbus Long-Term Care Insurance policy includes "usual and customary" language, typically not found in other LTC Insurance contracts.
At the time of claim, no matter what benefit level you have available at that time and no matter the actual cost of care being billed by the provider, the Knights of Columbus will determine if the charge is "usual and customary."
This wording in the policy can limit the total amount of benefits you have available at the time of claim.
- Lack of Partnership Certification. The Knights of Columbus does not offer partnership policies, unlike many companies. Without the partnership certification, you lose the additional dollar-for-dollar asset protection.
You can learn more about the federal/state partnership program and other state-specific information on long-term care by finding your state on the LTC NEWS Cost of Care Calculator.
Find State-Specific Information
You can learn more about the federal/state partnership program by going to the LTC NEWS Cost of Calculator. Each state has a state-specific page that includes the current and future cost of long-term care services, available tax incentives, information on care providers, and other important information - Cost of Care Calculator - Choose Your State | LTC News.
If you own a Knights of Columbus Long-Term Care Insurance policy and seek help submitting a claim, LTC NEWS offers free - no-obligation assistance - including help finding quality caregivers and facilities. Since most agents have little or no experience in this area, this assistance can be beneficial for the entire family - Filing a Long-Term Care Insurance Claim | LTC News
Federal Regulation and Consumer Protections
All Long-Term Care Insurance contracts are regulated under IRS regulations §7702B(b)(1). Any insurance contract that meets the guidelines set by the Internal Revenue Service is considered long-term care. All insurance products that meet these federal guidelines contain consumer protections and regulated benefit triggers, in addition to tax advantages.
Shopping for Long-Term Care Insurance?
When shopping for Long-Term Care Insurance coverage, keep in mind, numerous state and federal regulations impact Long-Term Care Insurance. Each state's department of insurance regulates products and premiums. Because of regulation, an insurance agent, agency, or financial advisor cannot give a consumer a special discount that is not available otherwise.
Be sure to use all the tools and resources available on LTC NEWS to help you in your research - Resources for Long-Term Care Planning | LTC News.
There are more similarities than differences when it comes to features and benefits. However, options and benefits vary from company to company, and premiums can vary between companies by over 100% when comparing equal benefits.
Long-Term Care Insurance is medically underwritten, and every company has its own underwriting rules which determine insurability and rate class. An experienced Long-Term Care Insurance specialist will understand these underwriting rules when helping you select the best company and policy options.
Be sure to seek the assistance of a qualified Long-Term Care Specialist to compare the features, benefits, and costs of each policy. You can find a trusted and qualified specialist representing the major insurance companies that offer these products - Work With a Specialist | LTC News.
Since your health is a primary consideration in determining your eligibility for coverage, it is always best to start planning before retirement when health is usually better. An experienced Long-Term Care Insurance specialist will ask you several questions about your health to provide you with accurate quotes and professional recommendations.
Please note: Since every company has different underwriting rules, you could be eligible for coverage with one company and not another.
Because Long-Term Care Insurance is custom-designed, you can design the plan to fit your specific needs, concerns, and budget. A specialist will help you develop your plan to address your concerns. Generally, you can design a plan to meet some or all of these common goals:
- Safeguard income and savings
- Protect the lifestyle of your spouse/partner
- Provide options for quality care
- Reduce the stress and burdens otherwise placed on family members
- Give your adult children time to be family
- Provide a legacy for loved ones
State variations may apply.