The kind folks at MassMutual recently emailed with some interesting information about what they see as major trends in Long Term care insurance. A couple stood out:

■ There continues to be a move away - industry-wide, really - from lifetime benefits. This is likely due to two interrelated factors: fewer companies even offer it, and it's hellaciously expensive (cf: chicken, egg). In fact, lifetime benefit sales dropped from 33% in 2004 to roughly 13% in 2011.

■ Inflation protection (whereby the benefit increases automatically every year to keep pace) has always been an attractive rider (and is, of course, required for Partnership Compliance). Most carriers offer both 3% and 5% options, but the sales of the latter seem to be dropping off, most likely due to cost.

As always, Herman Brun's primer on why you might want to consider LTCi is a must-read.