Gray Easterling
Gray Easterling

Sorry for the title, but just trying to make a boring topic more pleasant. In the November, 2015 Prevention magazine, there were some tips that might help you with health insurance problems. Avoid calling your insurance company on Monday; Wednesday, Thursday or early Friday are better days to get questions answered. When you call, have your summary of benefits document available for reference. When you talk with an insurance rep, ask them to repeat the section they are referring to when giving an answer to avoid misinterpretations. If you are calling for an upcoming treatment, have the specific diagnostic and procedural codes from your doctor. Ask for a nurse—most case managers at insurance companies are RNs. They may be more knowledgeable and more sympathetic to your cause. Don’t pay until the amount you owe according to the EOB (explanation of benefits) form matches your doctor’s bill. If they don’t, call the doctor’s office and ask if the insurance company billed you correctly and find out what codes were used. If you are calling on a parent’s behalf, they will need to be with you to authorize the insurance company to share info with you. If the insurance company makes an exception to coverage rules, make sure you get the agreement in writing from the company. A verbal commitment is much harder to document. Finally, keep notes including date, time, whom you spoke to, and what was agreed to. Better yet, have the insurance company rep send you an e-mail confirming the conversation.


Long term care insurance is more and more important to a secure retirement as we live longer and longer. It is not getting cheaper or easier to obtain, but there are new coverages available that may make more sense than the traditional policy with a monthly benefit funded with monthly premiums. One of my favorite developments is the hybrid policy offered by most major life insurance companies. These take several forms, but here are two options that are fairly easy to explain. First is a regular life policy with a long term care rider. This coverage provides a death benefit, first and foremost. However, if you need long term care, the rider allows a predetermined percent of the death benefit to be disbursed for long term care expenses. The death benefit will be reduced by the amounts paid out for long term care. Another option is a policy that you can fund with a lump sum payment or fixed premiums for ten years. This policy will provide death benefits, a long term care benefit that is a multiple of the premium and a guaranteed return of premium feature, if you ever need the premiums refunded. In both types of hybrid, you will receive some benefit for you premiums. In the traditional policy, if you don’t need long term care, you have paid a lot of money for no tangible benefit. These remarks are an over simplification of the products, but should give you a “heads up” if you are in the market for coverage.


Have you ever had a day where you are filled with a sense of wonder and amazement for no good reason? Do you feel apprehensive because you can’t or don’t understand why you are so blessed? I had a run of these days several weeks ago and finally concluded (whether right or wrong) that God had filled me with his spirit and wanted me to share the good news with someone! I had no idea what to do, which resulted in more angst. I finally just got on my knees and thanked God for all my blessings, all my gifts and for a life that is filled with love, good friends and a holy promise of eternal life. Instant relief. Not sure I fulfilled the direction or the push I was getting, but I sure felt better. God is good. God is faithful. As you prepare for the New Year, please include Him in your life, and, just as important, invite others to share your worship experience. In the words from “The Earth Adorned” by Waldemar Ahlen, “Grant us the grace to keep your word and live in love redeeming. All flesh is grass, the flowers fade, and time is fleeting ever. God’s word remains forever.”


Although this information has been gathered from sources believed to be reliable, it cannot be guaranteed.  This material is intended for informational purposes only and should not be construed or acted upon as individualized tax, legal or investment advice.  FSC Securities Corporation does not offer tax or legal advice.  The views expressed are not necessarily the opinion of FSC Securities Corporation.  Financial Solutions Group is a marketing name.  Financial Solutions Group is located at 128 Versailles Blvd, Alexandria, LA  71301.  We can be reached at (318) 448-3201. Securities, insurance and advisory services offered through FSC Securities Corporation, member FINRA/SIPC.