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Posts Tagged ‘Affordable Care Act’

PPACA helps delay Medicare insolvency

Friday, August 1st, 2014

Benefits Pro reports:

“The main trust fund behind Medicare, the $583 billion U.S. health program for the elderly and disabled, will be exhausted in 2030, four years later than projected last year, the government reported.

An improving economy and the health-care overhaul — the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act – may stave off depletion of the fund as it took in more money and spent less than expected last year. The trust fund pays for hospital visits, nursing care and related services for Medicare’s 52 million beneficiaries. Its assets fell $7.1 billion in 2013 to $281 billion, less than one-third the reduction of a year earlier, according to a report released today by the program’s trustees.

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Feds release draft tax forms for employer compliance with ACA

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

Benefits News reports:

“The Internal Revenue Service on Thursday released drafts of the forms employers will use to report on health coverage they offer to their employees, unveiling a glimpse of the administrative onus in store for benefit advisers and their employer clients working to comply with the Affordable Care Act.

Despite continuing calls to further delay the mandate and confusion about employer shared responsibility requirements following conflicting court rulings just this week on ACA subsidies offered on the federal exchange, the IRS posted to its website draft forms for employers and individuals to use when reporting their health coverage starting in 2015.

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Quinn aide: Court rulings don’t jeopardize federal health-care subsidies

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

The State Journal-Register reports:

“Conflicting federal court rulings Tuesday pose no immediate financial threat for the 168,000 Illinoisans receiving reduced-price health insurance through the federal Affordable Care Act, an aide to Gov. Pat Quinn says.
The legality of the subsidies in states such as Illinois, which doesn’t operate its own health insurance “exchange,” was called into question by one of the rulings.

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To Prevent Surprise Bills, New Health Law Rules Could Widen Insurer Networks

Wednesday, July 30th, 2014

The New York Times reports:

“The Obama administration and state insurance regulators are developing stricter standards to address the concerns of consumers who say that many health plans under the Affordable Care Act have unduly limited their choices of doctors and hospitals, leaving them with unexpected medical bills.

Federal officials said the new standards would be similar to those used by the government to determine whether Medicare Advantage plans had enough doctors and hospitals in their networks. These private plans, sold by companies like UnitedHealth and Humana, provide comprehensive care to 16 million of the 54 million Medicare beneficiaries.

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J.D. Power Reports: The Uninsured Remain Underserved by Health Exchanges, As Many Continue to Struggle to Enroll in Healthcare Coverage

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Digital Journal reports:

“While the Affordable Care Act is designed to reduce cost and increase access to health insurance, many U.S. citizens still are uninsured and underserved due to obstacles not based on cost, such as technical problems and lack of information from health insurance companies and health exchanges, according to the inaugural J.D. Power 2014 Health Insurance Marketplace Shopper StudySM released today.

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Orientation and waiting periods for coverage are latest guidance

Monday, July 21st, 2014

Business Insurance reports:

“Employers can impose a one-month orientation period before a 90-day waiting period starts to either offer qualifying employees group health insurance or face a penalty, according to the latest federal guidance on complying with the health care reform law. The rules, issued last month by the departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury, said employer orientation periods are “commonplace” for the estimated 5.1 million new employees per year and are reasonable as long as they are short.

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Getting Affordable Care Act subsidies

Thursday, July 17th, 2014

USA Today reports:

“The Affordable Care Act (ACA), aka Obamacare, provides subsidies to Americans making up to 400% of the poverty level, about $94,200 for a family of four. Can you juggle finances to best cash in on subsidies?

Rather than limiting subsidies to only those with a small net worth, the ACA provides aid to all persons with low incomes, including those early or partial retirees.

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Final health care reform rule permits one-month orientation period

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Business Insurance reports:

“Employers are allowed to impose “orientation” periods of up to one month before a maximum 90-day waiting period on the start of health care coverage for new employees, under final health care law reform rules.The rules, issued Friday jointly by the U.S. departments of Health and Human Services, Labor and Treasury, finalize and clarify how such orientation periods would work.

Under the final regulations, the one-month orientation period would be calculated by adding one calendar month and subtracting one calendar day, measured from an employee’s starting day.

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Businesses re-evaluate spousal coverage

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014

Benefits Pro reports:

“When United Parcel Service (UPS) announced a major change in spousal insurance coverage, it was the shot heard ’round the benefits world.

“I have been talking about working spouses with access to their own health insurance for more than 10 years,” says Scott Snow, president of S.M. Snow & Associates Inc. in Berlin, Mass. “I was ahead of my time, and now it’s catching up with me. It’s a hot topic.”

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Obamacare co-op Land of Lincoln loses money in first quarter

Thursday, June 26th, 2014

Crains Chicago Health Care Daily reports:

“Illinois’ only co-op health insurance program lost more than $4 million and enrolled fewer than 2,500 people in its first quarter of operation as it struggled to enter a market dominated by one massive competitor.

Land of Lincoln Health Inc. Co-op had just 2,451 members by March 31, 97 percent of whom bought individual plans. The carrier was established under President Barack Obama’s health care reform law and aimed to increase competition in Illinois’ individual and group insurance markets.

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