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It might be touch and go right now, but for the moment, the sky has not fallen and the nation has not yet devolved into godless, Supreme Court-sanctioned, freedomless socialism. But be prepared, just in case, because the Obama administration has just issued regulations for the individual mandate to purchase health insurance under Obamacare.

But it's not that scary.

The mandate penalty "applies only to the limited group of taxpayers who choose to spend a substantial period of time without coverage despite having ready access to affordable coverage," HHS said in a fact sheet on the new rules.

The same fact sheet also noted findings from the Congressional Budget Office that less than 2 percent of the American public will have to make a payment under the mandate.

In 2014, people who choose not to buy insurance and don't quality for an exemption from the mandate will have to pay a fine of $95. The penalty increases to $695 by 2016, and then rises annually based on a pre-determined formula.

If you have a short lapse in coverage, you don't need to worry about the long arm of the law tracking you down. If you lose your job and lose coverage, the IRS won't be at your door. If you don't make enough money to be required to file federal income taxes, you're not going to be fined, though subsidized health insurance will be available to you on the exchanges that will be set up next year. If you have an enlightened enough governor, you might also possibly qualify for the expanded Medicaid program. And if you live in a state without an enlightened governor and you would otherwise qualify for the expanded Medicaid, you will not be subject to the fines if you don't get coverage.

If you can't buy insurance for less than nine percent of your annual salary, you won't be subject to the fines. If you turn down coverage at the beginning of the year because you can't afford it, but then your finances change to make it affordable later in the year, you will still be exempt from the mandate.

Originally posted to Joan McCarter on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 11:21 AM PST.

Also republished by Daily Kos.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Does this basically mean, that I can (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    arealniceguy

    just purchase insurance if I get really sick or in an accident?

    95 dollars isn't that bad of a penalty even if I didn't get sick for that year. 695 isn't that bad either when you think about monthly premiums, even through the exchange.

    Look, I tried to be reasonable...

    by campionrules on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 11:31:50 AM PST

    •  I'm not sure, (4+ / 0-)

      I know they can't deny you, but they probably will still find a way to charge you a much higher rate. Also, if you make less than $88,000 per year you'll get subsidies to purchase insurance, which you (obviously) wouldn't get if you went with the penalty, and many preventative services are also covered.

      If too many people choose to pay the penalty, premiums will skyrocket for all of us, and then all the new regulations on preexisting conditions will become impracticable. Obamacare will collapse, and the Republicans will say I told you so. The real goal of this is to get people signed up.

      "It is, it seems, politically impossible to organize expenditure on the scale necessary to prove my case -- except in war conditions."--JM Keynes, 1940

      by randomfacts on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 11:42:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Yes, I agree (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tofumagoo, arealniceguy

        That people should get signed up. I just not sure how a someone in their mid twenties, who's healthy and doesn't need regular doctor care would benefit from purchasing a policy and paying a monthly premium(even a subsidized one) when the yearly penalty is 95 bucks.

        It's seems counter intuitive to tell someone they should maintain insurance 'just in case' when they can save money and buy it if they need it.

        Perhaps the number of people that fall into that category will be small. I suspect that a large group of people will still continue to utilize their employer provided healthcare.

        Look, I tried to be reasonable...

        by campionrules on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 12:04:17 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The penalty is only (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tapu dali, LOrion

          95 bucks for the first year. There are a lot of people out there who don't even know what choices they have. I think that's the main impediment to getting people signed up. It's not that people don't want insurance, it's that a lot of people who would buy insurance don't even know about the penalty and subsidy, and in some cases don't even know what the benefits of having insurance would be.

          "It is, it seems, politically impossible to organize expenditure on the scale necessary to prove my case -- except in war conditions."--JM Keynes, 1940

          by randomfacts on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 12:23:28 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  This has always been my concern. (3+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus, randomfacts, GayHillbilly

            The beauty of (ahem) single-payer is that everybody is paret of the pool, ill and well alike, reducing overall individual insurance costs.

            It is, indeed, the PPACA's fatal flaw. If enough 20 and 30 somerhings decide to opt out, the program is in trouble.

            I know you believe you understood what you think I said, but I'm not sure you realize that what you heard is not what I meant. -- S.I. Hayakawa

            by tapu dali on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:19:00 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  I'll opt out (0+ / 0-)

              I see no reason why I should pay for it when I'm healthy rather than just buy it if I happen to get sick.

              •  Playing with fire, but I see your point (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                elginblt, GayHillbilly

                Trouble is, something like an emergency appendix removal, a car crash, really any emergency situation and you won't have time to "buy it" when you need it.  Your emergency room bills will bankrupt you if you aren't independently wealthy and you don't have insurance.  

                I understand your point but you're really toeing the line on your financial health by trying to game the system to save yourself a thousand dollars or so a year...

                With that said, a single payer system where everyone is enrolled is the solution to this but... yeah.  We're not there yet.

                [Terrorists] are a dime a dozen, they are all over the world and for every one we lock up there will be three to take his place. --Digby

                by rabel on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 06:58:21 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  correct (0+ / 0-)

                  but then it's not "health insurance", it's "anti-bankruptcy insurance". I don't have much to lose in bankruptcy anyways.

                  it's not financially worth it for me to buy a plan that covers normal checkups, because those cost so much even though I'm young and healthy.  if I get catastrophic coverage, then that' snot really health insurance, it's bankruptcy protection.

                •  further (0+ / 0-)

                  part of the point is that if I DID get sick, then I can just sign up for insurance then - they will have to take me.

                  •  not if it's sudden (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    GayHillbilly

                    You won't get coverage for bills you've already run up, and while you momentarily don't have anything to lose in bankruptcy, that won't always be the case.  If you apply for insurance after you're sick, the insurer could just take it's time processing your application. Also, don't assume bankruptcy will get you out of all bills. Remember how upset a lot of us were about the bankruptcy law back in I think it was 2005? There are personal debts that can't be discharged in bankruptcy. I don't know the details, but I know I don't want to learn the hard way.

                    •  Correct (0+ / 0-)

                      But when we are talking about the calculation of premiums vs. chance if needing lots and lots of medical care, the fact that you can still get insurance for expensive but not sudden ailments makes it even less of a risk than it would otherwise be.

        •  because accidents happen (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          ozoozol, elginblt, lurkyloo

          and not everyone lives happily ever after.

          Jesus died to save you from Yahweh.

          by nolagrl on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 06:19:23 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

        •  I would think some one in that group would still (0+ / 0-)

          have a benefit because they might want to get a flu shot (Any one with school age children will probably get the flu if they have not had the flu shot.) or get a STD check up after a hot one night stand they never planned on.

          Our money system is not what we have been led to believe. The creation of money has been "privatized," or taken over by private money lenders. Thomas Jefferson called them “bold and bankrupt adventurers just pretending to have money.” webofdebt

          by arealniceguy on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 07:13:20 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  For clarification--the $88,000 is now (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Odysseus, Willa Rogers, randomfacts

        $92,200 annual income, and applies only to a "Family of Four."

        For an "Individual," the annual income is MUCH lower.  

        It is $44,680 from July1, 2012 through June 30, 2013.

        Here's a link to the FPL Table for 2012.  [I believe that this runs from July 1 of one year, through June 30 of the subsequent year.  So a new table may be the forthcoming by July 1, 2013.]

        Mollie

        “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

        by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 03:53:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  $44,680 for an individual (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          AoT, Odysseus

          Is still a decent sum of money, depending where you live. obviously its going to go a hell of a lot farther in Alabama than in a major metropolitan area.

          If you are making $45K a year, you're not exactly destitute and you should be required to carry insurance.

          •  a few points: (2+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Odysseus, Willa Rogers

            a) you are correct that $44k is not poor. it's a lot higher than the median wage, in fact.

            b) still, because insurance can be incredibly expensive, it can still eat up a very large share of the income of somebody making that much money.

            c) you state that "you should be required to carry insurance" as a matter of fact.  You didn't offer any reasons why you think that.  I disagree, since such a huge portion of insurance payments is basically wasted, especially on things like executive's 4th vacation homes.  

            •  It is a matter of fact (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              nolagrl

              It is the law. And as far as wasted premiums, the medical loss ratio greatly reduces that.

              •  well (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Odysseus, Willa Rogers

                as for it being the law, that's not a good answer in a discussion of the value of that being the law.

                Further, even with the medical loss ratio, it's still a large % going into private pockets (and the return is a lot less than something like Medicare).

                And that's if the medical loss ratio holds - which it won't (it often hasn't in places where it was already law, such as California). There is a provision for insurance companies to request exemption from it in the ACA, and it comes down to one executive brance person (a position created by the ACA, but I forget the title of the position) to say yes or no. There's a good chance of regulatory capture.

          •  Hey, I was just trying to clear up the (0+ / 0-)

            "misinformation" above.  It have often heard folks mistakenly quote the amount of $88,000, though it applies to individuals.

            Yes, depending upon where you live, it isn't destitute.  But it's also not a great sum of money in many localities, especially if you're keeping up your own household (i.e., not sharing housing expenses with someone else).

            Personally, we've lived in both D.C. and Alaska (and Alaska has its own FPL because the cost of living there is so high), and I wouldn't envy anyone in either place that was keeping a household up by themselves on that annual income.

            I heard a couple of Brookings economists say during a congressional committee hearing last year, that in today's money (this was in 2012) "middle class" begins at somewhere between $60,000 and $65,000 annual "household" income.

            So, my biggest concern with the ACA is that the subsidies stop at the working class, not the middle class income levels.  For those folks in that income range with a mortgage and two car payments, it will be tough, if not impossible.  And I worry about the "age rating" 3:1 ratio.  I don't think that it's appropriate since group health insurance plans don't rate for age, just lifestyle (smoking).

            But for upper income folks, it will work out well since they will have access to much lower premiums, than before the ACA was enacted.  And for young people up to age 26 (or is it up to, and including?).   :-)

            Mollie

            “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

            by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 05:43:57 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Oh, and actually, it can get people making less (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            musiccitymollie

            http://www.huffingtonpost.com/...

            WASHINGTON — Some families could get priced out of health insurance due to what's being called a glitch in President Barack Obama's overhaul law. IRS regulations issued Wednesday failed to fix the problem as liberal backers of the president's plan had hoped.

            As a result, some families that can't afford the employer coverage that they are offered on the job will not be able to get financial assistance from the government to buy private health insurance on their own. How many people will be affected is unclear.

            The Obama administration says its hands were tied by the way Congress wrote the law. Officials said the administration tried to mitigate the impact. Families that can't get coverage because of the glitch will not face a tax penalty for remaining uninsured, the IRS rules said.....

            Bruce Lesley, president of First Focus, an advocacy group for children, cited estimates that close to 500,000 children could remain uninsured because of the glitch. "The children's community is disappointed by the administration's decision to deny access to coverage for children based on a bogus definition of affordability," Lesley said in a statement.

            The problem seems to be the way the law defined affordable.

            Congress said affordable coverage can't cost more than 9.5 percent of family income. People with coverage the law considers affordable cannot get subsidies to go into the new insurance markets. The purpose of that restriction was to prevent a stampede away from employer coverage.

            Congress went on to say that what counts as affordable is keyed to the cost of self-only coverage offered to an individual worker, not his or her family. A typical workplace plan costs about $5,600 for an individual worker. But the cost of family coverage is nearly three times higher, about $15,700, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation.

            So if the employer isn't willing to chip in for family premiums – as most big companies already do – some families will be out of luck. They may not be able to afford the full premium on their own, and they'd be locked out of the subsidies in the health care overhaul law.

            Employers are relieved that the Obama administration didn't try to put the cost of providing family coverage on them.

    •  yes...that is what it seems like... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      campionrules

      and due to Roberts ruling, the tax can't be raised to be penal.

      I am interested to see how this circle is squared.   ACA still have issues.  Everyone that said, we can just improve it later...well..now is the time before it gets a bad name.

      "Small Businesses Don't Build Levees" - Melissa Harris Perry

      by justmy2 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 11:56:12 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  that's how I see it. I'm 52, but I have not (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Beastly Fool, Odysseus

      been to a doctor in over 20 years. So it makes zero sense for me to pay $200-300 a month or whatever (I get no subsidy) for a health policy I very likely won't use. It's much better for me to just pay the $95 next year at tax time.

      I'd be more inclined to just pay the money per month IF that money were going to provide care for somebody else or reducing someone else's cost (by, say, financing a tax-paid health care system). I'd have no gripe or problem with paying a $200/month tax if it goes to provide health care for others who need it. But it's not doing that---any money I pay for a policy is just a monthly welfare payment straight to the insurance company's profits, and I don't give a flying fuck about the insurance company's profits. So my plan is to not buy any policy until/unless I need it, and just pay the fine, or tax, or whatever we want to call it (and sadly they won't even use THAT to actually provide health care to anybody). I see no reason whatsoever to give free money to the insurance company for doing nothing, especially when it helps absolutely nobody except the CEOs bonus. (shrug)

      And if the insurance companies start bitching and moaning because people aren't giving them their free welfare payments, then I say let them go ahead and repeal the whole idiotic insurance mandate idea if that's what they wanna do--that way we can do what we should have done in the first place; install a tax-funded Medicare-style health care for everyone and tell the insurance companies to go fuck themselves.

      •  Exchange options (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Beastly Fool

        I remember reading something last year (before the campaigns revved up into high gear) about one of the exchange options possibly being a non-profit insurance carrier. It wouldn't quite be a public option, but something pretty close to it. Perhaps someone remembers the details better than I can.
        Addressing your resistance to contributing to ins co profits, would you be willing to obtain insurance from an entity whose only purpose was promoting healthcare, and not lining the pockets of its CEOs?

        •  That's DOA now (4+ / 0-)

          The 2013 tax bill cut all funding for non-profit health exchanges.

          Some of the best provisions of PPACA, like Sanders' community health centers, have already been the victim of recent budget cuts. At least the Medicaid expansion survives intact--so far, and for those states adopting it.

        •  absolutely (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          jeopardydd, tofumagoo
          would you be willing to obtain insurance from an entity whose only purpose was promoting healthcare, and not lining the pockets of its CEOs?
          Though I would still prefer that my taxes or payments or whatever would actually go to providing actual care to actual people, which ACA does not do no matter who has the policy.  Catastrophic health insurance is great (at least for the minority of people in the US who actually HAVE homes and cars and 401k's and such to lose), but it doesn't provide doctor care to people who need it.

          My situation with regards to ACA is a bit unique, since my income has quadrupled in the past four years, so I have gone in one fell swoop from being poor and qualifying for full subsidies under ACA (which, I discovered quickly, would still not allow me to afford to see a doctor when I needed one, since the only policies available with the subsidy were high-deductible shit policies) to being NOT poor and not qualifying for any subsidy at all (making ACA for me a simple catastrophic health insurance policy, which I don't need since I have no house or car or 401k to protect). I've now seen ACA from both ends, and not been happy with either view.

      •  I strongly recommend you get annual check ups (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        MRobDC, davewill, mdmslle

        About 10 years ago one of my best friends, who also hadn't been to a doctor in over 20 years, very suddenly dropped dead, leaving a wife and three small children.

        "We have always known that heedless self-interest was bad morals, now we know that it is bad economics." Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Jan. 20, 1937

        by Navy Vet Terp on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:15:41 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  You say: "So it makes zero sense for me to pay (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        tofumagoo, Odysseus

        $200-$300 a month or whatever (I get no subsidy) for a health policy I very likely won't use."

        Well, in the first place, you probably wouldn't pay anywhere near that little at age 52.  

        Here's the link to the Mass Health Connector.  But it is closed until open enrollment period July 1-August 15, 2013.

        At any rate, not long after they established the Exchange, I went to the Connector to price it (don't live in Mass, but wondered what kind of deal the folks there were getting).

        At just ages 53 then, the premiums for mid-range (for coverage) catastrophic policies were priced from $700-1100 monthly (for that age group).

        And remember, the federal exchange will be "age-rated" also, at 3:1.

        So, Lenny, "only in your dreams" will you find a policy with that low of a premium today (true, that's only my guess, based on the Mass Health Exchange).  Although, I suppose if one were to shop for a 60/40 plan, one might make out fairly well, moneywise.

        Seriously, group health insurance premiums have literally skyrocketed since I looked into the Mass Exchange.

        Our group premium has tripled since Year 2001.

        So good luck!

        Mollie

        “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

        by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:23:29 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I looked just the other night (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          musiccitymollie

          There were many in that price range on Blue Cross/Blue Sheild's website here in Mn. That was for a 52 yr old smoker.

          Some people have short memories

          by lenzy1000 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:56:36 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Good for you! Mr. Mollie says we're moving to (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            lenzy1000

            Minnesota!  LOL!

            Mollie

            “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

            by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 06:11:05 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Minnesota has low rates (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              musiccitymollie, GayHillbilly

              due to low malpractice rates made possible by common sense tort reform. We require a second independent doctor to confirm damages before a lawsuit can proceed. We also have no tolerance for bad doctors. If they screw up we pull their license. Many have fled south to Texas where they can be free from those nasty lawsuits. Low income patients are covered by MnCare which is funded by a tax levied on insurance companies for every healthcare policy they issue. The consumer never sees it and many don't even know they are funding it.

              Some people have short memories

              by lenzy1000 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 06:39:16 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  Yeah for Minnesota! My state (red) had exorbitant (2+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Willa Rogers, lenzy1000

                prices for catastrophic policies listed on the Medicaid-lite website, at one time.  After I read your reply, got on the website, and found that they no longer even offer any for folks just over the Medicaid eligibility income.  (Maybe because the ACA will soon come online.)

                At any rate, 0ur Medicaid program is handled by a private insurer, United Healthcare, and is a managed-care program, not a PPO.  And it is very difficult to find a doctor who will accept anymore Medicaid patients (and increasingly, Medicare patients).

                Mollie

                “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

                by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 07:27:30 PM PST

                [ Parent ]

      •  But you SHOULD have gone to a doctor (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, MRobDC

        in the last 20 years. You could have any number of issues that would have been better dealt with sooner.

        "Nothing happens unless first a dream. " ~ Carl Sandburg

        by davewill on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:24:43 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  I'm always a little disgusted (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Odysseus

          By people who say things like "i haven't been to the doctor in 20 years" with pride. My mother was the same way and had been living with uncontrolled diabetes (unknown to her) for god knows how long. She's not paying the price, with very expensive visits to multiple doctors a month that could have been to a large degree avoided if she had found out years ago that she was diabetic.

        •  that's nice, but alas (3+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          tofumagoo, Odysseus, Willa Rogers

          until about three years ago, I was poor and couldn't afford a visit to the doctor even if I needed it (broken bone or something). I have a gap in my jawbone right now because about ten years ago one of my wisdom teeth got infected, cracked, and the pieces fell out one at a time. I couldn't afford the oral surgeon to treat it.

          So what I should have done and what I could actually afford to do, were two entirely different things. And alas, self-righteous tut-tutting on someone else's part won't alter that.

          If we'd had a decent health care system like every other civilized country does, of course, then I could have gone to the doctor for routine checkups as well as needed medical treatments.

          But we didn't. So I couldn't. (shrug)

      •  Yeah, but I'm pretty sure that you'd be hit with (0+ / 0-)

        huge costs if something happens.   Say you fall off your roof, or get shot on the street, or develop diabetes.....   sure, the insurance company can't deny coverage, but if you don't have insurance at the time of your accident, then the hospitals and doctors  ARE allowed to charge you for services that you need to keep you alive if you present to a hospital emergency room.   HUGE costs.  And then, if you need ongoing  care, they'll either charge you market rates for medical services, or offer to sell you a policy with a level of premiums to make up for the fact that you weren't sharing the risk with the rest of us while you had no coverage.

        •  oddly enough, that is precisely the same situation (0+ / 0-)

          I've been in for nearly all of my adult life.

          There will inevitably be changes in ACA, though, for the simple reason that ACA does not actually provide any access to a doctor for people who actually need it.  All ACA does is provide catastrophic coverage, mostly to people who don't need it because they don't have any assets to protect. As far as actual medical access, all ACA subsidies do is pay for high-deductible shit policies which guarantee that poor people still can't afford to see a doctor when they need to.

          That will have to be dealt with.

          Soon.

          •  Well, that's "half right," LOL! (0+ / 0-)

            Definitely can't argue with this statement:  As far as actual medical access, all ACA subsidies do is pay for high-deductible shit policies which guarantee that poor people still can't afford to see a doctor when they need to."

            But don't forget, it is beneficial to more affluent folks, small business owners, etc., for whom a "high deductible" policy (set up with a health savings account) is quite sufficient.  For many of them, the premiums may not be a steal, but they'll probably be lower than than could find in the private individual insurance market.

            I do know a little about this, since I come from a huge family of insurance and securities brokers, although I'm not personally 'in th biz.'  :-)

            Mollie

            “If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

            by musiccitymollie on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 05:56:41 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  regarding this: (2+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              musiccitymollie, BusyinCA
              But don't forget, it is beneficial to more affluent folks, small business owners, etc., for whom a "high deductible" policy (set up with a health savings account) is quite sufficient.  For many of them, the premiums may not be a steal, but they'll probably be lower than than could find in the private individual insurance market.
              that is indeed the viewpoint that many people here at DKos look at it through, since many of the people here are themselves upper-middle class, more affluent folks. Me, I've been dirt-poor for nearly my entire life (the highest wage I ever got was eight bucks an hour and I never had benefits of any sort, not even paid sick days), and even though I was fortunate enough to claw my way out of it, I still view the world through that lens. So it really really annoyed me when, back during the "kill the bill" pie fight, many people here were arguing that we needed ACA to protect people from losing their house or retirement savings because of a medical emergency.  Many Kossacks were (and many still are, probably) utterly oblivious to the fact that most people in the US don't even HAVE any retirement savings and don't own a home, so they have no assets to lose or to protect, and forced catastrophic insurance does absolutely nothing for them. It doesn't even let them see a doctor when they need to.

              So for the non-affluent, the ACA does nothing.  Nothing at all whatsoever.

    •  ER-Only Insurance (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tofumagoo

      The $95, then the $695 is to pay for your care should you go to an emergency room and the hospital cannot get money from you.  

      Of course, if everybody has access to affordable healthcare, there will be strong pressure from hospitals to end the rule that makes them give free ER care to the indigent.

      "Politics should be the part-time profession of every citizen who would protect the rights and privileges of free people and who would preserve what is good and fruitful in our national heritage." -- Lucille Ball

      by Yamaneko2 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 03:17:09 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  That's what I was thinking. Even at 600 per year (0+ / 0-)

      why would I spend thousands of dollars a year on insurance, when I can just get it when I need it

    •  So If I am unemployed in a Repub state with (0+ / 0-)

      a dimwit gov (like texas) who does not want go join any federal government program set up Democtats will I just be out of luck as far as coverage and have to go to an emergency room where the hospital will have to pay to stabalize me out of their 'to be used in case of dimwhit governor issues.' emergency fund?

      Our money system is not what we have been led to believe. The creation of money has been "privatized," or taken over by private money lenders. Thomas Jefferson called them “bold and bankrupt adventurers just pretending to have money.” webofdebt

      by arealniceguy on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 07:07:10 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  In MA, you can't file taxes without (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    worldlotus

    proving that you have insurance. That was Romney's idea. But that won't stop Fox Limbaugh from demonizing Obama.

  •  I read the fine print. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joan McCarter, vcmvo2

    Those who do not submit to the will of Obama will have to face a Death Panel.

    But don't tell anyone. It's buried in six-point-type at the bottom of page 384 of the regulations.

  •  But...wait... (0+ / 0-)

    There are storm clouds on the horizon!

    The sun is going dark!  There are locusts devouring what's left of my yard plantings after Sandy came through!

    Dogs are marrying cats!  Officiated by Rick Santorum!

    The stars are winking out!  (Remember the sun just went dark.)

    I see...I see...a mothership come to rapture up the true believers!  (Looks like they have a transporter beam of some kind.)  They are leaving all their earthly possessions behind!

    Arrrrggghhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Cool echo chamber effects here.)

    (Liberaldregs regains his composure.)

    Hey, wait!  The wingnuts are all gone!  The storm clouds and sun going dark was just the squall line Weatherdude warned us about.  The mothership is out of Earth orbit and the sun is coming out.  And thanks to global warming, it's 65 degrees out.

    And the local megachurch pastor left behind his Porsche 911 Turbo, with signed over title to "you goddamn secularist Obamacare supporters" (that's me!) and the keys in the ignition.  When the rapture comes, we get their shit!!  Hooray!

  •  My Situation on the Mandate (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    tofumagoo, Odysseus

    I don't make enough money IMO to buy it.
    this is the first month I had left over money in ages.

    I got a quote of 213 bucks with a 3500 deductable.

    anyway I'll pay the 95 bucks.
    I will continue to pay the fine till it's over 1,000.

    •  The highest is $695 (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eeff

      The highest the fine will ever get is $695,
      the more important point is that any quote you got today is meaningless, because come 2014,  there are a lot of changes and possibilities.
      If you make less than 133% of Federal Poverty Level (which changes depending on whether you are single or have a family), you can possibly get practically free care through Medicaid,
      if you make up to 4 times that level, you can get a subsidy through an advance tax credit, which will lower the price of any insurance,
      and insurance premiums themselves will be changing since they can't base the cost on whether you had previous illnesses or not. Make sure you get all the facts before paying any kind of penalty. (and you don't pay a penalty if insurance would cost you over 9% of your income)

  •  Hey! I see what you did with that headline... (0+ / 0-)

    that's funny.

    ;-)

    Words can sometimes, in moments of grace, attain the quality of deeds. --Elie Wiesel

    by a gilas girl on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:14:06 PM PST

  •  That was a really bad (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    mdmslle, Willa Rogers

    sales pitch.

  •  I'll pay the penalty thank you very much. n/t (0+ / 0-)
  •  Idaho senator compares exchange to Holocaust.. (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Tunk, BusyinCA

    Only in Idaho!  You'll just love the latest from Sen. Sheryl Nuxoll R-(nut)Cottonwood

    http://www.spokesman.com/...

    The hits just keep on coming.

  •  Draconian! n/t (0+ / 0-)

    "Kossacks are held to a higher standard. Like Hebrew National hot dogs." - blueaardvark

    by louisev on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:22:57 PM PST

  •  i hear there's supposed to be a real strong (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Willa Rogers

    public information push.

    I certainly hope so because this sounds like a mess. No offense.

  •  America continues to exist (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BusyinCA

    and the sky has not fallen, but it is raining frogs in Hartford CT, the Insurance Capitol of the World.
    Actually, several insurance companies have left the HealthCare field since PPACA was signed.
    One of them was my insurer and since I'm self employed and uninsured (and at my age, just being alive is a pre-existing condition) I'm holding my breath and being VERY careful until the ACA exchanges stand up.

    If I ran this circus, things would be DIFFERENT!

    by CwV on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:33:49 PM PST

  •  I still think (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    AoT, Willa Rogers

    it is going to be difficult for a lot of people to purchase a policy even on the exchanges.  If you make $10.00 an hour, it roughly comes to a yearly income of $20,800.00 (before taxes), and 9% of that is $1,872 which is a lot of money if your making just a little over twenty thousand a year before taxes.  The monthly average would be $156.00 for a policy.  

    I'm still mixed on this because I know so many people that have gone from professional jobs to jobs that maintain (barely) a living with no extras.  And I wonder about out of pocket costs, and the medical community excepting people with policies that cover (maybe) the basics.  Plus, the stupid Republican governors that are refusing to expand Medicaid will create problems for those that truly need insurance.  

    "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

    by zaka1 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 04:35:58 PM PST

    •  It doesn't apply under 44k (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      zaka1

      and under 44k gets subsidies.

      At least that's the way I think I've been reading it.  Although the details are hard to find so I've mostly been relying on articles like the one linked in the diary.

      •  OK, (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        AoT, BusyinCA

        well that makes sense.  This change is going to take time and some learning by the seat of our pants.  I was just reading this article over at another website:

        Some families could get priced out of health insurance due to what's being called a glitch in President Barack Obama's overhaul law. IRS regulations issued Wednesday failed to fix the problem as liberal backers of the president's plan had hoped.

        As a result, some families that can't afford the employer coverage that they are offered on the job will not be able to get financial assistance from the government to buy private health insurance on their own. How many people will be affected is unclear.

        The Obama administration says its hands were tied by the way Congress wrote the law. Officials said the administration tried to mitigate the impact. Families that can't get coverage because of the glitch will not face a tax penalty for remaining uninsured, the IRS rules said.

        I think it is good that people won't face the penalty because of the glitch, but I wonder it there won't be mistakes made that will cost people time and money because it seems like there are too many variables to the new system.

        It has helped me already since I'm on disability, I know my medications are affordable now whereas they were too expensive before.  So there is good things happening as well as glitches.  Just glad the Republicans didn't win the election, things would have really been a mess.

        "During times of universal deceit, telling the truth becomes a revolution­ary act. " George Orwell

        by zaka1 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 06:50:32 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  This is bad news . . . (0+ / 0-)

          And progressive healthcare advocacy groups have known about this since the ACA was written.  Don't understand why there's not a mechanism for fixing this glitch.

          While it's good that they won't be forced to pay the penalty, it means that they may very well be unable to afford any health insurance for their family.  Something needs to be done about this, and soon.

          Mollie

          "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

          "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

          by musiccitymollie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 08:48:12 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  If I pay the $695, can I get health care? (0+ / 0-)

    If the fine money goes towards national health care, I'd rather pay that than give money to an insurance company which got us into this mess in the first place.

  •  The last paragraph (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BusyinCA

    contains the most important talking point

    If you can't buy insurance for less than nine percent of your annual salary, you won't be subject to the fines. If you turn down coverage at the beginning of the year because you can't afford it, but then your finances change to make it affordable later in the year, you will still be exempt from the mandate.
    that paragraph alone will go a long way to calm people's fears

    Some people have short memories

    by lenzy1000 on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 05:06:19 PM PST

    •  not really (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      tofumagoo, Odysseus, Willa Rogers

      what level of insurance are they talking about? ANY insurance?

      if I can buy catastrophic insurance with a $20k deductible for less than 9% of my income, will the fine apply to me?

    •  Mind you, the 'nine percent' rule applies to only (0+ / 0-)

      "Individual" coverage (under your employers group insurance plan), NOT "Family" coverage.

      Health care advocates have been lobbying HHS for a couple of years, since they realized this (in order to change it, of course).

      Mollie

      "Only he who can see the invisible, can do the impossible." --Frank L. Gaines

      "If a dog won’t come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.” -- Woodrow Wilson

      by musiccitymollie on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 12:42:46 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  One wrinkle in all of this (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    BusyinCA

    is that health insurers can still turn people down for having pre-existing conditions. I would like to buy affordable insurance in California but I got turned down by the less expensive insurer, Kaiser. There's no way I can afford Blue Shield, and I'd probably get turned down for that as well.

    The civil rights, gay rights and women's movements, designed to allow others to reach for power previously grasped only by white men, have made a real difference, and the outlines of 21st century America have emerged. -- Paul West of LA Times

    by LiberalLady on Wed Jan 30, 2013 at 07:44:50 PM PST

  •  Republican Mandates (0+ / 0-)

    They are "Republican mandates", not "individual mandates". They were invented by the Republicans, who deserve sole credit for this bad idea.

    Or, if you prefer, "discriminatory taxes", since the SCOTUS opted to think of them not as mandates at all, but rather a novel kind of tax.

    This is what we will have to suffer with until we get real healthcare reform. Eventually, the economics will drive us into some kind of publicly-funded healthcare system, for the simple reason we can't afford to pay for-profit insurance rates and still buy clothes.

    So, maybe we should just call them the "naked mandates" and be done with it.

  •  Taxes (0+ / 0-)

    I'm glad the requirements are not onerous, but keeping track of all those exceptions -- and who has insurance and who doesn't -- is going to be a nightmare for tax preparers.

  •  This spin is a sad commentary (0+ / 0-)

    ...on how far the Tea Party paranoiacs have shifted the framing.  So it's "good news" that although many families still won't be able to afford health care, they won't have to pay the penalty for doing so?  My family is at 200% of poverty level, and my wife works as a special ed teacher and gets individual coverage through work with no premium.  It would however cost nearly 20 percent of our take-home income to cover me and the kids, so I learn from these rules that we won't get a subsidy but won't be penalised.  Whoopee.

    I have been a stalwart Democrat and unflagging Obama supporter since forever, but I am now literally feeling sick.  How in the world does it make sense for people to have to pay far more for coverage if they are married to someone who has (really expensive) family health coverage available through their job, than if there was no such coverage available?!?  Gaaahhhh.

    -9.00, -3.69 "The purpose of a campaign is not to answer their attacks, but make them answer our attacks." - Paul Begala

    by SlackerInc on Thu Jan 31, 2013 at 01:13:24 PM PST

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