Skip to main content

View Diary: What Obamacare means for businesses: Facts vs. fiction (135 comments)

Comment Preferences

  •  I still don't get the details (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:

    Here's my situation: I work as an adjunct instructor, with the number of courses varying semester to semester. We are allowed to buy into the university health plan in any semester in which we teach at least two courses; at two courses you pay 1/2 the cost, at three you pay 1/4. But that's only for those 4 months. In January, June, July, and August you pay the full rate (about $520/mo single person, $1375 family). And in any semester when you teach zero or one, you can't buy in and can only get COBRA at the full amount. So if they look at the months when I'm earning pretty good money and the cost is only 1/4 of the total premium, it's "affordable." But on an annual basis, it's not. What many people do is just pay for it the months that they teach -- so you're constantly doing paperwork to get on and off, and you're insured only part of the year.

    To make it more complicated, it's not clear whether three courses is "FT" -- full-time people teach 7 over a year, so either 3 or 4 per semester.

    The university and the faculty union just negotiated a brand new 4-year contract, and health care costs were one of the sticking points -- and I don't think anyone was looking at the impact of the ACA.

    I am frankly hoping I can just ignore the employer and buy through the exchange, which seems much saner and would not vary month to month depending on my course load.

    I am a retired lawyer and good at reading fine print, and I can't figure this out. I can see why small and not-so-small businesses and ordinary people are massively confused. And the explanations don't really help until we see real numbers and real forms and real exchange options.

    •  that sounds horrible (0+ / 0-)

      So you have to hope that you get sick in the months that you're covered?

    •  One thing to be aware of (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Brian B

      Under the ACA, if your employer offers insurance and you don't take it you can still join an exchange, however, you are not eligible for any subsidy and subject to the penalty tax. If your employer offers anything at all that the ACA considers "affordable" effectively you must take it.

      The same is also true if you live in the same household as someone whose employer offers health insurance that covers the spouse or the family. If the employee takes that insurance but the other household members opt to join an exchange none of them receive a subsidy and all of them are subject to the penalty tax.

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site