Federal employees who want to purchase long-term care insurance through the federal program will be paying more for their premiums, the Washington Post reported on Wednesday. As of Aug. 1, new enrollees will pay higher rates than current enrollees in the Federal Long-Term Care Insurance Program.
Government Executive, a business publication serving high-level civilian and military officials, reported that notices sent to agency benefit officers by the Office of Personnel Management, which sponsors the program, did not specify an average rate increase, but said the increases apply to all plan options for new enrollees.
A comparison of the plans shows that in FLTCIP 1.0, daily benefit amounts were paid in increments of $25 between $50 and $300 a day. FLTCIP 2.0 uses $50 increments between $100 and $450. The old plan provided weekly benefit amounts equal to seven times the daily benefit; that option is no longer available to 2.0 enrollees.
Jesse Slome, director of the American Association for Long-Term Care Insurance (AALTCI), said the federal program is the largest long-term care insurance program in the United States, and expressed surprise at the increase.
“This frankly was a surprise because the program is up to be rebid shortly when one assumes rates will go up,” he said in a statement. “The last premium increase took place back in 2009, which made this policy less expensive than many policies available to individuals. That may seem good, but it also means a rate increase for policyholders or a change in policy benefits could be likely.”
The new plan eliminated a 30-day waiting period option. New enrollees must be eligible for the program for 90 days before they can receive benefits, but they are no longer required to incur expenses in that period. Both FLTCIP 1.0 and 2.0 require that the waiting period only be met once in the participant’s lifetime.
Both plans cover nursing home and assisted living facility care up to 100% of the daily benefit amount. Where the grandfathered plan covers home care and adult day care up to 75% of the DBA, new enrollees’ plan will cover up to 100%.