Glitch may be an understatement, but that’s what industry analysts have by and large termed a Wednesday failure of the Internal Revenue Service to properly address an Obamacare funding issue — and now families may be outpriced from health plans.
Employer-sponsored health care plans are on the rise, and costs that are passed along to workers may leave some scrambling for more moderately priced plans. Such families were supposed to get financial assistance from the government to help pay for plans outside their places of employment — but according to The Associated Press, Congress didn’t include text for that financial assistance program in the final Obamacare law. So, Obamacare supporters were expecting the IRS to fix this problem — but the agency did not.
Its newly issued regulations failed to provide for that particular scenario and instead, these families will face the same fines imposed on those who don’t carry health insurance at all — the same fines as those who violate the mandate portion of Obamacare, according to the AP.
The main issue: What’s defined as affordable?
The White House, according to the AP, has blamed Congress.
“This is a very significant problem, and we have urged that it be fixed,” said Ron Pollack, executive director of Families USA, told the AP.
An immediate fix is unlikely. At least one advocacy group, First Focus, is estimating 500,000 children could be left uninsured due to the glitch, the media report continued.
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Cheryl Chumley is a continuous news writer for The Washington Times. Previously, she was part of the start-up team for The Washington Times’ digital aggregation product, Times247. She’s also a 2008-2009 Robert Novak journalism fellow with The Phillips Foundation. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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