Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Farley’s bill providing tax breaks for long-term health care costs becomes law

STATE CAPITOL, PHOENIX – Assistant Minority Leader Steve Farley's, D-Tucson (District 28), bill to provide tax breaks for middle-class families paying for long-term health care is now law. Gov. Jan Brewer signed the bill Monday and it will go into effect the beginning of August.

“As soon as this summer, middle-class families who will be caring for people who need long-term health care will get some financial relief,” Farley said. “Arizonans will be able to better manage long-term medical care expenses for themselves and the seniors they love without growing the size or scope of government.”

The new law allows taxpayers to create tax-deductible savings accounts to pay for non-hospital expenses, such as nursing home care, home health care and assisted or alternative family living. It also allows taxpayers to take deductions for long-term health care insurance premiums, even if they do not itemize their deductions.

“Across the country, families face the financial hardships associated with paying for long-term health care,” Farley said. “There is no national plan for dealing with these astounding costs. This law is the first of desperately needed reforms and I intend to continue to propose legislation both in Arizona and on a federal level that will benefit middle-class families making decisions about long-term care.”

Farley added that he understands firsthand the financial challenges of providing long-term medical care for a loved one.

“This is a deeply personal issue for me. My mother passed away last year and spent the last three years of her life in long-term care,” Farley said. “This is an issue that is or soon will be vitally important to many Arizonans. I am grateful for the support of my colleagues.”

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