The Future of Long-Term Care: How Other States Are Gearing up an Following in Washington's Footsteps
Last year, Washington became the first state to mandate long-term care insurance for all residents through the Washington Cares Act.
If you're unfamiliar,
this law requires all residents who don't already have a long-term care insurance policy to enroll in a government plan, known as the Washington Long-Term Care Program or WA Cares Fund.
The WA Cares Fund is the first publicly operated state long-term care insurance program in the country, funded by a .0058 (0.58 percent) payroll tax on all employee wages, beginning July 1, 2023.
But here's the thing: if you think this only affects only Washington residents, you're mistaken.
A number of states, including AK, CA, CO, HI, IL, ME, MI, MN, MO, MT, NY, NC, OR, PA, and UT, are working on similar requirements for their residents in 2023.
With this new legislation, there's a huge surge for nearly 187 million people to secure qualifying LTC plans. Ones that work for their specific needs, and options other than being forced into a government plan.
Qualifying plans might include:
Life insurance with long-term care riders
Long-term care insurance (LTC) claims typically start when individuals reach their 80s. For this reason, the most cost-effective time to purchase LTC insurance is generally between ages 50 and 65.
The younger you are, the lower the cost.
If you fall within this age range, you're well positioned to benefit from the financial security and peace of mind that LTC insurance can provide.
But even if you're outside this age range, you might still be an excellent candidate for LTC insurance if you're in good health, can afford the potential costs (including possible premium increases), and want to avoid using most or all of your assets and income to pay for long-term care.
With LTC insurance, you can also avoid burdening your family or friends with the financial and logistical challenges of caring for you in old age.
In short, whether you're in your 50s, 60s, or beyond, LTC insurance can be a smart investment for anyone who wants to protect themselves and their loved ones from the high costs and potential burdens of long-term care.
If you or someone you know wants to plan for the future and gain a clear understanding of their current life situation, it's time to take action.