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Current Events & Hot Topics Current Events & Hot Topics

Obamacare Is Here: Pay the Premium or Pay the Penalty

Posted by on Sep. 13, 2013 at 5:41 PM
  • 189 Replies


Obamacare is Here: Pay the Premium or Pay the Penalty

By MainStreet - 09/13/13 - 4:39 PM EDT

By Hal M. Bundrick

NEW YORK (MainStreet) -- It is the rise of Obamacare-ageddon. Businesses are already cutting workers' hours and trimming payrolls as the greatly debated and highly anticipated Affordable Care Act becomes a reality October 1. State health care insurance exchanges will open and employers will be required to notify their workforces of available options. Nearly 12 million Americans that don't currently have health insurance will have three months to make a decision or pay a penalty. Let the havoc begin.

"Many, but by no means all, uninsured individuals are American adults under the age of 30, who mostly enjoy the robust good health that comes with youth," says Eleanor Blayney, consumer advocate for the Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards. "Medical costs, let alone health insurance, are often pretty low on their list of financial concerns. Facing the choice to get insurance or pay a penalty, they may resort to simple math and conclude that $95 is a lot more affordable than the $3,000 or $4,000 that is currently being estimated as the cost of the lowest level of insurance coverage available on the state exchanges."

However, Blayney advises Americans to consider several factors before deciding to pay the federal penalty and forego health insurance:

Rising penalties for having no insurance - In 2014, uninsured Americans will be required to obtain health insurance or pay a penalty equal to the greater of $95 per adult and $47.50 per child, or 1% of family income. In 2015, the penalty rises to the greater of $325 per adult (half as much for each child) or 2% of income. In 2016 and beyond, the penalties rise even further.
The risk of incurring huge medical costs due to an accident - Being young and healthy does not vaccinate you from the kind of risk that can leave you and your family destitute.
Limited access to quality medical care when you do need it - While the Affordable Care Act will not close down access to emergency rooms when an uninsured individual needs immediate care, getting treatment from other physicians for chronic conditions is going to be a lot more difficult. Some providers, upon learning you are uninsured, may simply decline you as a patient.
The increased likelihood that you will neglect the routine, preventative procedures that can keep you healthy - It stands to reason that if you are unwilling to pay for insurance, you'll probably be averse to the high cost of an annual check-up or routine procedures.
"The likely reality is that it's going to cost more for the uninsured to get health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act, relative to what it costs now," says Blayney. "But the financial math needs to factor in not just the hard, out-of-pocket costs today, but the potential costs of being without insurance."

HealthCare.gov provides additional information regarding the Affordable Care Act, including links to state health care exchange websites - or the federal exchange if your state has not yet adopted its own.

--Written by Hal M. Bundrick for MainStreet
by on Sep. 13, 2013 at 5:41 PM
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Replies (1-10):
turtle68
by Mahinaarangi on Sep. 13, 2013 at 6:23 PM
6 moms liked this

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?

RandRMomma
by Maya on Sep. 13, 2013 at 6:28 PM
I thought the penalty had been delayed a year?
twinmom114
by Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 7:19 PM
Not that I know of. But the penalty will continue to go up every year.


Quoting RandRMomma:

I thought the penalty had been delayed a year?

Wicked.Jester
by on Sep. 13, 2013 at 7:27 PM
8 moms liked this

Goodbye choice!   Now we must do what the Government wants us to do or we pay a penalty.

Wicked.Jester
by on Sep. 13, 2013 at 7:28 PM
1 mom liked this

The Federal government doesn't own the hospitals, they dont lose money when people use the ER.

Quoting turtle68:

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?


twinmom114
by Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 7:35 PM
So true!


Quoting Wicked.Jester:

Goodbye choice!   Now we must do what the Government wants us to do or we pay a penalty.


twinmom114
by Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 7:44 PM
$95 or 1% of your income. So if you make only $10,000 you pay $100.


Quoting turtle68:

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?


turtle68
by Mahinaarangi on Sep. 13, 2013 at 8:23 PM

Who covers the cost lost at the hospital?  Who pays for the infrastructure at public hospitals?

I dont know these answers...not being facetious :-)

Quoting Wicked.Jester:

The Federal government doesn't own the hospitals, they dont lose money when people use the ER.

Quoting turtle68:

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?



Themis_Defleo
by Bronze Member on Sep. 13, 2013 at 8:28 PM
1 mom liked this
The government does not pay the ER for the care -the cost is born by the hospital, who passes it to the other patients.

Quoting turtle68:

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?

Posted on CafeMom Mobile
turtle68
by Mahinaarangi on Sep. 13, 2013 at 8:30 PM

Our medicare levy is only 1.5....1.75 if you earn over X amount.  This is for everything medical, from GP appointments to major surgery.

How much would good health insurance cost if you only earned $10K?

Quoting twinmom114:

$95 or 1% of your income. So if you make only $10,000 you pay $100.


Quoting turtle68:

Think of it as a payment (the penalty of $95) for being able to access emergency care.

At least the government can recoup some of the losses at the ER.

Otherwise how does this differ from not being able to afford healthcare insurance yesterday?  did the youth of yesterday attend routine checkups and use preventative procedures without insurance?

Is $3000-$4000 a lot for annual insurance of a 20 year old ...was it cheaper yesterday?



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