The Washington State long-term care program was put on hold today according to information shared by the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance.
“Governor Inslee and the state’s legislative leaders agreed to delay the WA Cares payroll tax on employees,” shared Jesse Slome, director of the organization. Slome was sharing updates with information with insurance professionals who market long-term care insurance solutions.
“The stated reasoning is a desire to give legislators the opportunity to make refinements to the new program,” Slome explained. “However, I’ve seen this play before and I’d say they are gauging consumer anger at being taxed.”
Slome noted that a national long-term care insurance program was included and passed in 2010 as part of the federal Affordable Care Act (Obamacare). “While it was passed and signed into law, it basically vanished from existence virtually overnight,” Slome shared. “Will the WA Cares Act suffer from the same fate, only time will tell.”
A Washington state employee earning $100,000 would be taxed $48 monthly Slome explained. “That doesn’t sound like a huge sum but for someone in their 20s and 30s it’s money for a benefit they don’t think they’ll ever need,” Slome adds.
Slome advised those agents who have sold policies to individuals in Washington to maintain active communication with clients during this time. “Cancelling a policy could result in voiding their exemption from the tax,” Slome cautions. He notes that insurers have indicated they will charge back commissions should individuals not maintain their policy in force for a certain period of time.
The American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance advocates for the importance of long-term care planning and supports insurance professionals who market LTC insurance solutions. For more information, visit the organization’s website at www.aaltci.org.