A single-life immediate annuity can deliver ample cash flow for the rest of your life. However, you could buy a single-life annuity and suffer a fatal heart attack the next day. If so, no more payments will come from this annuity and your loved ones won’t see a penny.
Thus, at the same time you buy, say, a $250,000 immediate annuity, you also can take out a $250,000 insurance policy on your life. Now, if you should have that fatal heart attack and your $250,000 disappears with your single-life annuity, the beneficiary of your life insurance policy will get $250,000 in death benefits, free of income tax and possibly free of estate tax.
If you shop carefully for both an immediate annuity and a life insurance policy, you can lock in a lifelong stream of net income while still providing for your heirs.
Further, life annuities that also offer long-term care (LTC) benefits may work well for seniors who have more assets than income, which often is the case. For seniors such as these, paying premiums for traditional LTC insurance might not fit in their budget. They may have money set aside for this purpose, perhaps in CDs. Buying a combination product for LTC can help them leverage money they already have in place.
Annuity-based combinations may be more appropriate for individuals whose health makes it difficult to buy life insurance. For those who can buy life insurance, combinations typically are sold to people between 55 and 70 years old while annuity buyers generally are in the 65-85 age group. The younger and healthier you are the greater the appeal of life insurance, which can provide more benefits per dollar of premium than you’d get with an annuity.
Either way, some medical evaluation is likely before any product with LTC benefits can be sold. However, it’s very rare that applicants who can get life insurance will be declined for the long-term care coverage.