Is there any way to recover any of the money I have paid into a long term care insurance plan?

UPDATED: Sep 30, 2022

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Is there any way to recover any of the money I have paid into a long term care insurance plan?

For almost 15 years I have paid around 2000 per year for a long term care
insurance. Now the company is raising the premium by 15 with a note that it
may not be the only increase. The options they give me are to accept a reduced
benefit, accept a lowered time period during which they would pay, or to opt out.
If I opt out I lose almost 30,000. The other two options are also unacceptable to
me. I entered this contract in good faith and have never had to use it, but I am
now nearing an age when I may need it. Is there any path by which I can get the
money back to reinvest elsewhere or am I just out of luck? It seems so unfair.

Asked on April 9, 2016 under Insurance Law, Maryland


SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 6 years ago | Contributor

Morally, it may be a scam. Legally, if they never contractually guaranteed you a certain premium or limited their increases, they would have the right to raise the premiums--you purchased the insurance without premium protection. Insurers can increase premiums, even by large percentages, so long as they did not contract to not do so. (E.g. before I got on my wife's health insurance, when I bought my own insurance as a self-employed attorney, my premiums were going up 15-20% and more per year.) Their motives may be exactly what you describe, but the law does not care about motives. So in the absence of some contractual limitation on the premiums or increases, they can do this.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: The Answer(s) provided above are for general information only. The attorney providing the answer was not serving as the attorney for the person submitting the question or in any attorney-client relationship with such person. Laws may vary from state to state, and sometimes change. Tiny variations in the facts, or a fact not set forth in a question, often can change a legal outcome or an attorney's conclusion. Although has verified the attorney was admitted to practice law in at least one jurisdiction, he or she may not be authorized to practice law in the jurisdiction referred to in the question, nor is he or she necessarily experienced in the area of the law involved. Unlike the information in the Answer(s) above, upon which you should NOT rely, for personal advice you can rely upon we suggest you retain an attorney to represent you.

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