In the past week, we have been reminded of this fact in more ways than one. First, we received in the mail, a notice from the company which provides our auto and condo insurance. The notice tells us that we can expect a sizable rate increase when it is time for us to renew our auto insurance (every six months, when the condo policy is yearly and does not renew until next year). The reason for this rate increase is a new rule put out by our State Insurance Commissioner. The rule forbids insurance companies from using a person’s credit rating as a data point when calculating insurance rates. Our notice told us that our great credit rating kept our insurance rates low for years, but since they are now forbidden to use that, our rates will increase (despite the fact that neither of us has had an accident or a ticket in many years).
The ostensible reason for this new rule is the complaints of low-earning Washingtonians that their bad credit has been leading to higher insurance rates, despite their good driving records. So, in order to please the low-earners in Washington, all the higher-earners (and even low-earners with good credit) with good credit will have to pay more. Instead of the Insurance Commissioner steering low-earners to agencies which could help them improve their credit ratings, the heavy hand of Government lets them off the hook, and makes everyone else pay more. This is a typical response of the Left, which takes down the achievers to benefit the non-achievers. The result is that no one really benefits.
The other reminder that Washington State wants us gone, is the new “Long-term Care Tax” that takes effect in January, for all Washingtonians with W-2 income. The tax, which at inception will be $0.58/$100 of income, will have no cap (all your income from the first to last dollar will be taxed); it will never stop as long as you live and work in the state for an employer; it cannot be used until January of 2025; it has an upper dollar limit of $36,000, not adjusted for inflation; and it can only be used in the state of Washington-if you move away before needing it, you lose every penny you paid in. The law that authorized it in 2019 states that the State can increase the tax twice every year, and you can bet that they will do so. The worst provision of this law is that, if you opt out of the tax, you must purchase private long-term care insurance, and the deadline for doing so is October 31, 2021. The news today is that the companies who write such insurance might forbid many people from signing up, as they expect that there might be cancellations of policies when the tax takes effect. Here’s a quote.
People with their own long-term care policies can opt out, but those cost thousands of dollars a year. Those policies also need to be in place before the end of October, and insurance agents are saying you should apply by the end of this month to ensure coverage.
Condotta says, right now, it’s nearly impossible to get private insurance because companies are worried that people will sign up then cancel after the tax kicks in this coming January.
So, with all the other onerous taxes and regulations in the state, especially state-wide Covid masking and vaccination mandates, our state government seems to be telling us that they intend to keep us in chains forever. For us, the above two regulations might be last straws. Actually, we were both retired until the end of July, when I started a temporary job. The LTC tax pretty much tells me that I will no longer be earning W-2 income after this year-why should I pay into a LTC fund that will never, ever pay me back? I have already canceled my own LTC policy, when the premiums rose nearly 200%. Since the state has no income tax, how do they expect to get the information as to whether we have bought private insurance? Are we supposed to tell this to our employer, under penalty of perjury? What if we opt out of the state tax, and don’t buy private insurance because the insurance companies refuse to write us a policy? I am sure that younger people will be shocked to find out what private LTC insurance costs.
However, the leftists who live in the Seattle area and basically run the state, never met a tax they didn’t like or support. And they will get the warm fuzzies thinking that this new fund will help all those poor people who can’t afford their own policies, and the all-loving State will take care of them in their old age. Yeah, for about six months, until the money runs out. Then, they are on their own, or Medicaid (which requires beneficiaries to deplete most of their resources).
This makes me want out, even more than I did before.