Video replay of our WA Cares Fund long-term care tax webinar

Washington Retail hosted an informational webinar with guest speakers from ESD regarding the new WA Cares Fund long-term care tax on August 10, 2021

Topics covered:

  • Details about the WA Cares program
  • Employers reporting responsibilities
  • New mandatory employee payroll tax contribution
  • November 1 opt-out deadline

What you need to know:

  • The Washington State Legislature established a long-term care insurance benefit for all eligible workers to address the future long-term care crisis.
  • The WA Cares Fund adds a premium tax of $0.58 per $100 of earnings which applies to the employee’s entire paycheck without a ceiling.
  • Though the contribution rate is based on earnings, the lifetime maximum benefit of $36,500 with cost-of-living built-in is the same for all.
  • The benefit is not portable from state to state. In other words, Washington state workers who move out of state or retire to a different state will not be able to access benefits regardless of the amount of their contribution.
  • This program is solely funded by workers.
  • Self-employed earners must opt-in for the WCF, the same exemption criteria the Family Leave Act, but there are time limitations.
  • To be eligible to receive the benefit, you must meet specific qualifications of contribution and need.
  • According to the American Council of Aging, the maximum lifetime benefit would last a Washingtonian less than four months in the average nursing home.
  • Employers are responsible for communicating details of the program and process premiums on their behalf.
  • Time is running short if you want to apply for an exemption from the WA Cares Fund, Washington State’s new long term care program.
    • Due to HB 1323 passed earlier this year, only individuals who have purchased private LTC insurance by November 1, 2021 qualify for an exemption.

 Contact the WCF for questions or consider joining their email list.