On January 27, Washington Governor Inslee signed Washington HB 1732 and HB 1733 into law, which would delay the start of the long-term care program known as the Washington Cares Fund, just one day after the bills passed in the Washington legislature.

As signed, HB 1732 delays the implementation of the program by 18 months. The law allows for the refund of any amounts that taxpayers saw reduced from their paychecks after the tax to fund the program went into effect on January 1 and also modifies the conditions for becoming a qualified individual and eligible beneficiary by allowing for the extension of benefits to persons born before January 1, 1968. As signed, HB 1733 establishes voluntary exemptions to the program by providing exemptions for: (1) persons residing outside of Washington while working in the state, (2) veterans with a service-connected disability of 70 percent or higher, (3) spouses or domestic partners of active duty service members, and (4) persons working in the United States under a temporary, non-immigrant work visa.

Beginning in July 2023, Washington workers will be required to pay a $0.58 tax on every $100 and eligible residents will be able to receive long-term care services and support costing up to $36,500 over their lifetimes.