But they could buy a health plan without a tax credit, she added.
For someone age 55 to 64 at the Medicaid-income level — below $15,856 a year — it’s quite a jump from free Medicaid health insurance to an unsubsidized individual plan. Premiums in King County for an age 60 non-tobacco user for the most modest plan run from $451 to $859 per month.
It’s not the first time federal and state rules have clashed, and local officials now find themselves on the hook to ensure that the new law doesn’t create hardship.
In Oregon, state officials changed estate-recovery rules last month.
Recovery will no longer apply to health benefits for those 55 and over, the Oregon Health Authority said, although the state will collect expenses for long-term care.
On Friday, Washington Medicaid Director MaryAnne Lindeblad promised to draft an emergency rule soon. The state also must revise the plan filed with federal authorities, but Lindeblad said she doesn’t expect problems or appeals of the rule.
As for Prins and Balhorn, they’re good with their choice.
Instead of paying $577 a month apiece for an unsubsidized private plan or worrying about losing their assets after death, as a married couple they’ll pay $76 a month for a midlevel “silver” plan with a tax credit. “Since we’ve been in an established relationship and love each other, the decision to get married was pretty easy,” Prins said.
Sunday, they made a big fruit salad, dressed in tango clothing and were married in their home. Afterward, they danced to their favorite tango music and toasted each other with orange juice and a dash of cranberry.
“I’d be very happy if the governor actually makes this change possible,” Prins said late last week. “And I’m very happy to be getting married!”
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