In a lack of wisdom, North Dakota legislators are considering a bill to ban long-term care insurance policy sales for three years.

Just as Medicaid funding is getting stretched and the need for long-term care services will be increasing, North Dakota is apparently considering a bill that would impose a three-year ban on the sale of long-term care insurance policies. Really?

The sponsors want to study the market and the history of premium increases. Great, and they have every right to do so, but to ban sales for three years while you “study the market”? Come on, how big is the market in North Dakota? Spend a week.

Look, long-term care insurance is not perfect, and there are Cadillac policies and there are used Mazdas. And premiums have been going up because their rate of return on investing your premiums has been down for years. Blame the Fed for the low interest rates. 

My policy premium has probably doubled in the past five years, partly because I keep getting older. Can you believe that? But I have a gold standard policy with a $400 per day benefit that rises each year and no lifetime spending limit. They try to buy me down, but each year I say no. At $150 per month for that kind of coverage, I’ll keep it. And I would not need legislators to study it for three years. Come on.