One of the problems with the delay is the lack of reporting from the employers. Employers are being encouraged to "voluntarily" send the reports in anyway. I wonder how many will be doing that. Without that information the Federal Data Hub will not be able to determine who was eligible for a qualifying employer plan.
In addition they are not able to send an individuals income history to the State Exchanges to determine the amount of subsidy that individuals will be eligible for. Instead, state exchanges "may accept the applicants attestation form regarding enrollment in an eligible employer-sponsored plan...without verification". Also, for the first year of operation, "exchanges have discretion to accept an attestation of projected household income without further verification for subsidy eligibility. Do you see a potential for abuse here?
What might this delay cost?
- The Congressional Budget Office estimates that the delay will result in $10,000,000,000 in lost employer penalties from those large group employers that were not going to provide coverage to their employees. Unfortunately, much of this money was earmarked to pay for the ACA subsidies.
- It is also estimated that because of the delay 1,000,000 people will not be covered by employer sponsored plans.
- Half of those, however, will now be applying for subsidies at a cost of an additional $3,000,000,000. Three billion dollars that is not being collected from large employers.
I understand that most of you are waiting for the plan designs and pricing for the individual and small group exchange in Colorado. Today I learned that the Division of Insurance has postponed releasing those rates for another 2 weeks...so we will all have to wait to see what the insurance premiums look like for January 2014.
Until next time...
GOOD HEALTH - THAT'S THE PLAN!