Few things in life seem more unfair than the financial burden a cancer diagnosis can impose on a patient and their family. 

That’s why we decided to dig up all the wonderful organizations and creative ways to pay for expensive cancer treatments. From cancer funding organizations, to medical transportation, to selling your life insurance policy for cash. There are many resources listed in this infographic, including all the ways we could find to fund cancer treatment.

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THE BIGGEST LIST
OF WAYS TO FUND YOUR

Cancer Treatment & Expenses

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3% of cancer patients go bankrupt. Cancer patients are 2.5 times more likely to file bankruptcy than their healthy counterparts. Of those cancer patients who do go bankrupt, they are 80% more likely to die than those who don’t declare bankruptcy.
Bankrupt colorectal cancer patients were 2.5 times more likely to die than those who did not go into debt. Bankrupt prostate cancer patients were nearly 2 times more likely to die than those who did not go into debt.
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Viatical Settlements

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Hiddengemls logo 516-342-5516 Go to Website

Sell your life insurance policy to state licensed buyer for a lump-sum payment.

  • The buyer takes over payments on the policy and receives the death benefit when the patient dies.
  • Generally, you can expect to receive 10-60% face amount depending on life expectancy and premium obligations.
  • Possible to sell only part of the policy, in certain circumstances.
  • Can also borrow against your life insurance, in certain circumstances.

Financial Assistance Programs

American Cancer Society

Some offices will provide

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assistance
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assistance

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housing

Hill-Burton Funds

Federal grant providing free or low-cost services for patients who cannot pay.

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Work through specific hospitals.
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    Ask your hospital if they are a Hill-Burton facility.
  • If not, they can submit applications for funding either before, during, or after your treatment.
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    You can research to see which hospitals already participate in the program.

HealthWell Foundation

Helps patients with certain types of cancer pay their insurance premiums, copayments, coinsurance, and out of pocket health costs. Covered conditions may change, but at this time include:

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  • Carcinoid tumors
  • Cutaneous T-cell lymphoma
  • Metastatic melanoma
  • Non-Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Chemotherapy-induced anemia and neutropenia
  • Most other forms of cancer as well

CANCERCARE

Co-Payment Assistance Foundation

Offers help paying copays for breast cancer patients under going center types of chemotherapy and targeted therapy.

AVONCares Program

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Provides limited financial assistance for childcare during treatment

Komen Treatment Assistance Fund

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    Offers limited financial assistance for some medications, medical equipment and lymphedema supplies
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    Offers limited financial assistance for transportation to and from treatment
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    Offers limited financial assistance for childcare during treatment
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NeedyMeds.org

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Helps patients find pharmaceutical manufacturer assistance programs.

PAN Foundation

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Provides financial assistance for medication co-payments to people with cancer.

PATIENT ADVOCATE FOUNDATION

Co-Pay Relief Program

Provides financial assistance for drug co-payments to those who qualify.

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Financial Aid Fund

Provides limited financial assistance for

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Offers legal assistance and advocacy to help with insurance claim denials.

Partnership for Prescription Assistance

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Offers free and low-cost drug programs for cancer patients with limited income.
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Provides limited financial assistance for patients with blood cancer and significant financial need.

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Patient Financial Aid Program

Air Charity Network

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Offers air travel to treatment centers for patients and caregivers.
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  • Mercy Medical Airlift
  • Raquel’s Wings for Life
  • National Patient Travel Center
  • Lifeline Pilots

Offers air travel to treatment centers for patients and caregivers.

American Cancer Society Hope Lodge

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Provides lodging to families during treatment.

Helps with fundraising for people who need organ transplants.

Sisters Network Inc.

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Provides financial assistance for copays and breast prosthesis.

Provides lodging for patients during breast cancer treatments.

Cancer Financial Assistance Coalition

A collection of financial assistance organizations joining forces to help more people.Specific types of assistance are available for specific types of cancer.

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Medical bills

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Medication

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Legalities

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Travel and accommodations

Benefits Checkup

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Benefit program for seniors with limited income and resources.

The C.H.A.I.N Fund.

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Non-profit that raises money to assist cancer patients with household expenses such as rent/mortgage and utilities.

Air Care Alliance

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Volunteer pilots fly patients to treatment facilities.

Angle Airlines for Veterans

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Helps veterans, wounded warriors, and their families with medical air transport with air ambulance services, commercial airline tickets, and other programs.

Angel Airline Samaritans

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Helps cancer patients and their families get free or reduced commercial airline tickets for travel to and from distant specialized medical evaluations and treatment.

Patient AirLift Services

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A network of volunteer pilots who provide free air transport for people with chronic illnesses.

Hope Lodge

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Offers free or reduced-cost housing for families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at a nearby hospital.

Hope Lodge has 31 locations across the United States.

Ronald McDonald House

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Offers free or reduced-cost housing for families of seriously ill children receiving treatment at a nearby hospital.
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National charity with chapters all across the United States, they can help point patients in the direction of resources as needed.

Chronic Disease Fund

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Helps the underinsured with a chronic disease get their medication.

RxHope

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Helps patients get free or reduced-cost prescription medication.
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Cancer Family Relief Fund

A charity that provides grants to children who have parents or guardians who are dealing with a cancer diagnosis.

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The grants are meant to help support extracurricular activities to promote a sense of normalcy during treatment and recovery.

Brenda Mehling Cancer Fund

Provides financial assistance for cancer patients between the ages of 18-40. Grants can be used for:

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Co-payments
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Rent/mortgage
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Transportation
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Groceries
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Car insurance & repairs

Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program

Provides assistance to cancer patients who are having trouble paying for utilities. It can also be used to:

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Weatherize your home
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Make energy-related home repairs

Meals on Wheels Association of America

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Provides free meals for the elderly and disabled population.
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Patient Services

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Helps patients with chronic disease pay their insurance premiums, and copayments.
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National Transplant Assistance Fund

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Helps coordinate fundraising efforts for cancer patients who need transplants.

Limited financial assistance is also available.

The Actors Fund

Administered in Chicago, New York, and L.A.; Dedicated to helping professionals in the entertainment and performing arts industries. It helps with:

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    Housing
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    Health insurance
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    Funeral support
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    Support groups
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    Referrals
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Financial assistance for those disabled by illness
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Financial assistance for women in medical crisis

Society of St. Vincent de Paul

Available through the Catholic church in many local areas. Contact your local church and ask if one is available in your parish.
Provides help with:

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The Breast Cancer Charities of America

The “Help Now Fund” provides:

  • Counseling
  • Emergency financial assistance
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Transportation to and from treatment
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Past due utility bills
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Rent/mortgage

Meredith’s Miracles Colon Cancer Foundation

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Provides assistance to colon cancer patients under the age of 40.
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Chai Lifeline

Offers a variety of programs for families in the Jewish community who are affected by childhood cancer. Services include:

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Case management
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Counseling
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Financial assistance grants for non-medical expenses

Colon Cancer Alliance

Offers one-time grants of $300, based on application approval. Grants can be used for:

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Utilities
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Food
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Rent

National Children’s Cancer Society

An organization dedicated to helping children with cancer get a better quality of life. Services include:

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Support Services
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In-kind assistance
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Financial assistance
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Advocacy
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Education

Be the Match

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Part of the National Marrow Donor Program, Be the Match has funds to help pay forcopayments, insurance premiums, donor searches, lodging, food, and transportation, associated with a transplant.

Livestrong Fertility

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Helps patients who are undergoing treatments that may cause infertility. Furthers research, promotes educations, and assists with preservation treatments. Financial assistance is available for sperm banking and embryo freezing and storage.

Lymphoma Research Foundation

Provides limited financial assistance for unreimbursed treatment-related expenses, if funds are available. In addition, they also:

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Raise money for lymphoma research
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Provide support & education for patients & families
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Provide a patient-to-patient phone network, library, and newsletter

First Hand Foundation

Provides financial help to children and young adults when insurance and other financial resources aren’t enough. The grants can be used for:

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Durable medical equipment
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Clinical expenses
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Relocation expenses
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Some vehicle modifications

Myriad Reimbursement Assistance Program

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Helps patients with insurance billing and reimbursement issues for genetic testing administered through Myriad labs.

Leukemia Research Foundation

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Provides financial assistance to patients within 100 miles of Chicago and reimburses almost any treatment-related expense not covered by your medical insurance.

Verna’s Purse

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A financial assistance program from ReproTech, Ltd., this program is dedicated to helping patients bank sperm and freeze and store embryos.

Kristy Lasch Miracle Foundation

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Helps women under 30 living with breast cancer with medical expenses.

Cancer Liaison Program

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Helps patients, friends, and family get answers to their questions, and helps patients getaccess to drugs that are currently in development.

Marti Nelson Cancer Foundation

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This charity works to make experimental cancer drugs available on a compassionate access basis.

Sarcoma Alliance

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The Hand in Hand: The Suzanne R. Leider Memorial Assistance Fund – is the foregoing correct Something looks amiss provides financial assistance specifically for second opinion consultations by reimbursing travel expenses, phone bills, evaluation costs, and other directly related charges, for those dealing with a sarcoma diagnosis.

Rx Outreach

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Patient assistance program that provides affordable medicines for those who qualify financially. Provides 90-day supplies of prescription medications for $20, $30, or $40, regardless of prescribed daily quantity.

Together Rx Access

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Helps legal U.S. residents who are not eligible for Medicare, do not have drug coverage, and are within certain income levels to save approximately 25% to 40% on prescription medications.

National Organization for Rare Disorders

Helps fund education, advocacy, and research for the identification, treatment, and cure of rare disorders. Uninsured and underinsured patients can also qualify for assistance with medication and copayments.

Only applies to patients with certain types of cancer, whichmay change from time to time.
Conditions include:

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Advanced renal cell carcinoma
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Hodgkin lymphoma
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Peripheral T-cell lymphoma

Center for Medicare Advocacy, Inc.

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Provides education, advocacy, and legal assistance to help the elderly and people with disabilities obtain Medicare and necessary health care.

Where There’s a Need, Inc.

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Provides head scarves for women and children who’ve lost their hair as part of cancer treatment or other conditions.

Locks of Love

Provides wigs/hair pieces for children who are financially disadvantaged and going through long-term hair loss as a result of cancer or other medical condition.

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Wigs are provided for free, or for a small fee, based on a sliding scale.

Medicare Rights Center

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Provides free counseling for those with issues or questions about Medicare.

Financial assistance with premiums, deductibles, and copays is available for those with limited incomes.

The Max Foundation

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Their Banding Together program assists families with blood or rare cancers with fundraising for treatment related expenses.

Wigs for Kids

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Gives free wigs to kids under the age of 18 who’ve lost their hair as a result of cancer or other medical condition.

Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services

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Gives information about Medicare and Medicaid coverage to ensure cancer patients can get the care they need.

Children’s Organ Transplant Association

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Provides fundraising assistance for children and young adults who need life-saving transplants – whether organ, tissue, or bone marrow.

Medbank Foundation

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Provider of drug discount cards allowing patients to save 15% to 40% on prescription drugs.

Financial Planning Association

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Connects people with certified financial planners, based on client needs.

Alliance of Claims Assistance Professionals

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Provides education to make sure cancer patients get all the health insurance benefits they’re entitled to. Professionals act as liaisons between patients, insurance companies, and healthcare providers.

Cancer Legal Resource Center

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Connects patients and their friends and family with volunteer attorneys for in-depth legal consultations.

Heavenly Hats Foundation

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Provides free hats to cancer patients across the country.

Angel Wheels To Healing

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Offers non-emergency transport for patients in need.

Joe’s House

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Non-profit organization that helps cancer patients and their families find lodging for treatment away from home.

Angel Foundation

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Must be at least 18 years old with a cancer diagnosis
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Must be living or treated in the seven-county metro area of Minnesota
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Must be in active cancer treatment
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Must meet financial guidelines set by Angel Foundation
Remember, each
state has their
own programs
and funding
options.
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Call Patrick Dempsey center for Cancer Hope & Healing in Lewiston, Maine at
877-336-7287
Anyone can call and speak to a financial counselor who may be able to guide you to resources in your local area if you do not live in Maine
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Talk to your local Department of Social
Services in your city or county.
They may help with food, housing, medication, and general financial assistance.
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Look into community-based groups in your area, such as churches.
They may also be able to help with food, housing, medication, and general financial assistance.

Healthcare Hospitality Network

Nationwide network of more than 200 non-profit organizations that help provide lodging and support for loved ones receiving treatment far from home.
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Miracle Flights

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Flights for children with serious conditions to specific treatment centers, and helps with second opinions when one is not available in their hometown.

Corporate Angel Network

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Uses empty seats on corporate planes to transport patients to treatment centers.

National Collegiate Cancer Foundation

Provides financial support to young adults pursuing higher education through and after their treatment.
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Financial Assistance Programs

Life Insurance Loans

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Not the same as a viatical settlement, this involves going to your life insurance company and checking cash value of policy.

Many policies are slow to build cash value to borrow against.

Hiddengemls

Loans do not have to be paid back – they are taken from your benefit at death. But unpaid interest can cause a policy to lapse.
  • Charged interested – usually between 5% and 9%.
  • Unpaid interest will be compounded.
  • You’ll be paying interest om your interest.
Variable universal life insurance policies may also charge an “opportunity cost.”
  • Difference between what your policy was earning in an investment account and what it will make in the guaranteed account.

Call up a viaitcal settlement broker today to learn how a viatical settlement is more cost effective and smart than a life insurance loan.

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Cashing Out Retirement Plans

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Speak with your financial advisor about cashing out your retirement funds, or taking an early withdrawal.

  • Some plans allow for early withdrawals without penalty from the IRS.
  • The balance on your plan will still go to your beneficiary upon death.

Home Equity Loans

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If you have equity in your home, you may be able to take out a lump sum you can use to pay for cancer treatment.

  • You must make regular payments on a monthly basis to repay the loan.
  • You must have good enough credit to get the loan.
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Personal Loans

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This works like a home equity loan.

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Must have a good credit score
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Must make monthly payments to repay the loan.
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Require collateral.
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May put assets at risk if you cannot make payments.

Reverse Mortgages

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If you are a homeowner at least 62 years old, you may be able to convert to a reverse mortgage. This converts equity to monthly payments to the homeowner.
Loan doesn’t have to be repaid until:
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Death of last surviving homeowner
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Sale of the home
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Moving from the home – i.e. Into a long-term care facility.
If the balance of the loan isn’t paid in full at time of homeowner’s death, the mortgage company gets possession of the home, unless heirs can make payment.
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Sale of Assets

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If you hold stocks, bonds, or other investments, meet with your financial advisor to see what income tax ramifications there will be if you choose to sell.

Also consider selling your assets may interfere with your ability to qualify for some of the government-sponsored programs designed tohelp you.

Online Fundraisers

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Online fundraising sites allow you to ask for help from family, friends, and even strangers.

Sites charge processing fees of 7 to 12% of all donations, but money can be used to address any expense.

Options include:
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Accelerated Death Benefit

Some insurance policies provide for an accelerated death benefit rider.

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  • This rider permits a terminally ill person (usually with 12-24 months left to live) to cash out a certain percentage, genrally from 5-20%, of their life insurance policy to use for whatever they wish
  • The life insurance policy stays the same in every regard except that the face amount is less the amount withdrawn via the accelerated death benefit
  • A policy in which the accelerated death benefit was withdrawn is still eligible for a viatical settlement
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