Why you should discuss long-term care costs with clients

Toronto-based Manulife Financial Corp. has decided to discontinue sales of long-term care (LTC) insurance in Canada, the company announced on Monday.

Nov. 30, is the last day that Manulife will accept new applications for its LivingCare LTC insurance product.

The decision was based on “limited market acceptance” of the product, as well as new federal laws that restrict insurer access to medical information, according to a notice Manulife posted on its website on Monday.

LTC insurance provides a monthly tax-free benefit to policyholders who become functionally dependent. The product aims to help seniors cover the potentially steep costs associated with LTC.

Across the industry, LTC insurance has had limited uptake in the Canadian market, partially due to expensive premiums, strict underwriting criteria, and a lack of awareness.

Manulife’s decision to discontinue sales does not impact in-force LivingCare policies, or in-force disability or critical illness (CI) insurance policies that include LTC features and options.

Manulife will continue to offer LTC features and options on select disability and CI insurance products. There is no change to the Future Care Option on Manulife’s Proguard Series and Venture Series disability insurance products, and there is no change to the LivingCare Benefit and Continuation Option on Manulife’s Lifecheque CI insurance product.

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