Long-term care insurance provider proposes up to 178% rate increases for some Mainers

Long-term care insurance for more than 4,000 Mainers could soon get more expensive as one provider asks state regulators to approve a triple-digit rate increase.

Genworth Life Insurance, based in Virginia, has introduced a proposal to increase premiums between 56 percent and 178 percent on eight different groups of long-term care policies, according to the Maine Bureau of Insurance.

Long-term care insurance covers costs related to nursing home and assisted living care.

Thursday, the Bureau of Insurance held a public forum for policy holders to share their concerns related to the possible increase.

“We’re on a fixed income. These rate increases are an outrage,” one of the hundreds of Maine policy holders who testified said.

“It’s going to create a hardship on people who have paid in,” another said.

Under Maine law, insurance rates may not be “excessive, inadequate, or unfairly discriminatory.”

The Bureau of Insurance will get the final say on if those increases are justified, but they say, because of underpricing when the plans were first offered, the long-term care insurance industry has been financially strained for years.

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