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WA Cares Fund

  • Effective Jan. 1, 2022, Washington will tax your wages to fund the state long-term care program, the WA Cares Fund, unless you have received an exemption from the state and have given a copy of your exemption approval letter to the District’s Benefits Department.

  • The tax is $0.58 per $100 in wages. All types of pay are subject to the tax; there is no cap on taxable wages.

  • Starting Jan. 1, 2025, the WA Cares Fund will provide long-term care benefits of up to $100 per day, up to a lifetime maximum benefit of $36,500 (amounts will be indexed for inflation) to eligible Washingtonians.

  • To be eligible for WA Cares Fund benefits you must:

    • 10 years without an interruption of 5 or more years
            — OR—
      3 years within the last 6 years at the time you apply for long-term care AND Worked at least 500 hours per year during those years

    • Reside in Washington (when receiving the benefits)

    • Be unable to perform 3 out of 10 ADLs

What is Long-Term Care and Why is it Important?

Long-term care is the type of care you need when you are not able to perform Activities of Daily Living (ADLs), such as dressing, bathing, toileting, transferring and eating, due to an accident, illness, advancing age or if you have a severe cognitive impairment. 


LTC benefits help pay for professional in-home care, care at an assisted living facility or nursing home, professional services and family support.

Seven in 10 people will need LTC and unfortunately, Medicare doesn’t pay for it. Often our loved ones end up having to pay for – or provide – the care we need.  LTC insurance helps pay for caregiving services so you can get the care you need without depleting your life savings.

If you plan to retire before Jan. 1, 2025, live in another state during retirement, or live in another state before becoming eligible for the WA Cares Fund benefit, it’s unlikely you will be eligible to receive WA Cares Fund benefits and you may want to consider applying for an exemption.  

Booklets, Brochures  & Forms

Key Dates

  • Oct. 1, 2021
    First day to apply for WA Cares Fund exemption

  • Nov. 1, 2021
    LTC plans must be effective by this date to be considered for an exemption

  • Jan. 1, 2022
    WA Cares Fund premiums start

  • Dec. 31, 2022
    Last day to apply for an exemption

  • Jan. 1, 2025
    First day the WA Cares Fund benefit will be available for use