BEFORE YOU READ THIS DID YOU KNOW Commander in Chief. That his personal information is not in particular government data bases. So healthcare.gov could not actually verify his identity, oddly enough… So his staff did it.”
AND THAT HOWARD DEAN SAID: ., acknowledged that Obamacare increases the cost of health insurance for some people, but he argued that most Americans won’t get “screwed” by the law. Dean said that insurance would be cheaper, but “not for everybody,” I think the numbers are going to be small enough so that the antis, , the vast majority of people are going to benefit from this.”
Gottlieb, noting that “middle class folks really don’t benefit [from] the subsidies” in the health care exchanges, predicted that their insurance costs would spike. “Most of the people are people who had insurance are now being forcibly moved into the exchange and most of the middle class folks really don’t benefit in the subsidies,” he told Fox News’ Chris Wallace. “They’re going to find these plans much more expensive than what they were getting before.”
Almost all of the taxes that will be used to offset the cost of ACA are in place.
Tanning salons, colonoscopy scopes and prescription drugs like Xanax — they’re all items hit by taxes in recent years to fund President Barack Obama’s health care law.
A good chunk of these costs will be passed on to consumers in the form of higher premiums. And with those now in effect, almost all of the taxes that will be used to offset the cost of Obamacare are in place. The new levies include a multibillion-dollar assessment on insurance companies based on their market share, a fee that will be used to compensate insurers who take on the most costly policyholders and a penalty for individuals who decide to remain uninsured. A tax on so-called Cadillac health plans, set to begin in 2018, is the last major provision to kick in. Starting this year, low-income Americans can begin receiving tax credits for their insurance costs — a process that will be closely watched following the botched rollout of the Obamacare website.
What follows is an overview of the 2014 ACA tax-and-fee wave.
Take a HIT and pass it on:
This year, insurers will collectively pay an $8 billion health insurance tax known as HIT, a fee that will vary based on a company’s market share. Annual collections will increase to $14.3 billion by 2018, and more than $100 billion will be brought in over the next decade. The million-dollar question is how much of this cost insurers will pass on to consumers. But the law’s supporters argue the industry is just trying to protect profits and build support for repealing the tax.
Insurers point to a study done by international consulting firm Oliver Wyman a few years ago that found the tax would increase premiums by more than $2,800 per person and $6,800 per family over a decade. The study was paid for by the industry’s leading trade group, America’s Health Insurance Plans. Taxes could easily be “offset by additional revenue that the health insurance industry will get over the coming years” because of the law’s requirement that most people get insurance.
For instance, the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation said premiums will increase 2 percent because of the tax — about $350 to $400 per family by 2016.
A temporary, three-year tax on insurers, which will redistribute the money back to select health care providers as a sort of financial safety net, also officially kicked in Jan. 1. Some politicians call it the bellybutton tax — because it also applies to a policyholder’s spouse and dependents — while policy wonks know it as the “reinsurance fee.” By either name, it’s basically insurance for the insurers that spreads out risk. This year, insurers will owe Uncle Sam $63 per health insurance recipient — about $12 billion. The program will then hand over the money to insurance companies that find themselves taking on the most costly patients, those with severe health problems.
The 2014 Obamacare tax wave: It’s a tax that insurers and AHIP actually welcome. The Department of Health and Human Services estimates that it will reduce premiums in the individual market in 2014 by 10 percent to 15 percent compared with what they would have been without the program.
Tiberi and Lipinski both have a bill to repeal the fee, say the tax is unfair because the cost will be passed to policyholders of employer-sponsored health care plans who “get nothing in return.” Further fueling the political fire, the Obama administration has announced plans to exempt unions — traditional friends to the Democrats — from the tax.
ACA hits the wealthy: That includes a 3.8 percent surtax on unearned income from capital gains and dividends for individuals earning more than $200,000 and couples earning more than $250,000. The same income group also saw a 0.9 percent Medicare wage tax increase in 2013, That’s because starting with tax year 2013, taxpayers younger than 65 must show that such costs compose 10 percent of their incomes in order to write them off, up from 7.5 percent previously.
The individual mandate: The penalty for being uninsured also kicks in this year — though these individuals won’t have to pay up until early 2015 when they file their 2014 returns. March 31 is the deadline to be insured and dodge the penalty, which this year is $95 or 1 percent of your income, whichever is greater. Those amounts go up to 2 percent or $325 in 2015 and 2.5 percent or $695 in 2016. Some, including Scott Hodge, president of the conservative Tax Foundation, speculate that the administration will delay the penalty this year, just as it did for the employer mandate. “There will be political backlash,”
The price of HealthCare.gov: Starting this year, insurance companies that sell their plans on HealthCare.gov will have to pay a monthly fee that amounts to 3.5 percent of the premiums they sold on the website.
And lastly, there are the credits: This month the government will start cutting checks to insurance companies to help pay the medical expenses of qualifying Americans — those whose incomes are less than 400 percent of the poverty line or individuals making less than $45,900 and a family of four making less than $94,000. The total credit awarded is contingent on how much a person earns that year, so the less an individual earns, the greater the subsidy.
Sources-washington examiner, joel gehrke, vision to America, ed henry, fox, politico, Rachael bade