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Updated: Thursday, September 12 2013, 10:53 AM EDTWere just weeks away from the next major step for health care reform. On October first the insurance landscape changes dramatically when the so called "health care exchanges" open as part of the Affordable Care Act. They require individuals without coverage or the under insured to buy insurance or face penalties.If it sounds confusing to you, it's not any easier for small businesses.McHale's events and catering is a family business, Chuck McHale is third generation and he's proud of the health benefits offered to full time employees. But he's wondering what the affordable care act will mean to his bottom line.Chuck McHale, owner McHales catering, "so many unknowns until October first and the exchanges and we see more rates then more educated on where we need to go."To make matters more confusing the employer mandate to provide health insurance with 50 or more full time workers was delayed a year. Yet individuals without health insurance will pay a penalty beginning in January, the individual mandate was not delayed. Jack Neu, employee, "uncertainty is probably the best way to describe how I feel right now."Jack Neu says that as an employee at a company with 22 workers offered health insurance. He understands what the president of K-4 Architecture and Design is facing. Jack Klump, President of K-4, "our concern is it may get to the point it's going to be hard to compete with the benefits in the exchanges."In other words the health plans now offered employees might cost more than what individuals can buy on their own in an exchange . So does he then offer money to employees so they can buy their own coverage? Another factor for McHales' they don't always have 50 workers, they have a lot of seasonal workers. Going forward Obamacare is a consideration, "it looks like it's easier if we stay under 50 and don't fall under the regulations, it's not that we don't want to grow, but we're keeping a close eye on it."Matt Davis, Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber, "uncertainty around health care has surpassed economic uncertainty about the economy as one of the number one issues for employers."The chamber of commerce perspective is the affordable care act isn't good for an economy that's recovering but struggling. Just to reinforce how confusing this is for small business, the u.S. Chamber of commerce found 30 percent of small businesses are ready for the employer mandate, 44 percent are not and 26 percent don't even know what's required. John Venturella, Clark Schaefer Hackett, "and uncertainty in our mind and any body's mind doesn't bode well for moving forward."John Venturella was among a handful of CPA's invited to Washington to talk to the assistant treasurer for tax policy. He told him companies across the country are pausing with their 3 - 5 year strategies, "because they don't really understand or know how this law is going to affect their bottom line."Venturella was told companies should treat the next year as a practice year and chose the benefits they need to keep a competitive work force. That's why the companies we met do offer benefits, "we take a lot of pride in our compensation package."And they're not saying they're against the coming changes, "see how it plays out it's just so confusing.".And concern at McHales with a young pool of workers they could see rates jump 20 - 30 percent as insurers accept more older workers who are less healthy. The u.S. Chamber of commerce also found half of small businesses surveyed plan to reduce their workforce or cut employee hours to avoid the mandate in 2015. Healthcare Reform: Business Confusion
Enrollment for healthcare exchanges as part of healthcare reform begins October 1 in states where exchanges will be set up. Expect special reports each week from us about what you need to know about 'Obamacare' and the ongoing political fight about its future.
How will Obamacare affect my taxes?
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How does Obamacare affect my HSA?
Does my employer have to offer health insurance to me?
How long can my children stay on my insurance plan?
Since March 2010, when President Barack Obama signed the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) and its companion Health Care and Education Reconciliation Act (HCERA), the administration has published in the Federal Register 109 final regulations governing how Obamacare will be implemented.
Discord over President Obama’s health care law is forging strange alliances, with top Republicans reaching out to union bosses who helped Democrats muscle the legislation through Congress three years ago but now say the reforms will “destroy the very health and well-being of our members.”
A Texas physician has sued the federal government over Obamacare, hoping that new constitutional challenges will bring the beleaguered healthcare law back before the U.S. Supreme Court — and this time the high court will overturn it.
Small business owners' fear of the effect of the new health-care reform law on their bottom line is prompting many to hold off on hiring and even to shed jobs in some cases, a recent poll found.
Despite a shortage of U.S. primary care doctors, less than 25 percent of new doctors go into this field, and fewer still work in rural areas, researchers say.
Obamacare, he told The New York Times, is “a term, by the way, that I coined.” The boast — reminiscent of former Vice President Al Gore’s assertion that he invented the Internet — left political insiders rolling their eyes.
Spending on health benefits in service occupations and among small firms exposed to ObamaCare mandates shrank over the past year, new Labor Department data show.
Dozens of lawmakers and aides are so afraid that their health insurance premiums will skyrocket next year thanks to Obamacare that they are thinking about retiring early or just quitting.
States are starting to roll out details about the exchanges, providing a look at just how affordable coverage under the Affordable Care Act will be. Some potential participants may be surprised at the figures: $2,000 deductibles, $45 primary care visit co-pays, and $250 emergency room tabs.
Liberals have spent years claiming that "rate shock" under the Affordable Care Act—the 20% to 30% average spike in insurance premiums that every independent analyst projects—is merely the political imagination of Republicans and the insurance industry.
Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., announced Tuesday that he is proposing an amendment to the U.S. constitution that would effectively invalidate the requirement under ObamaCare that nearly everybody buy health insurance.
A pre-existing condition health insurance program established by Obamacare is already straining its own budget and, to control costs, the administration’s Health and Human Services Department (HHS) has stopped enrolling any new people in the program, according to an audit by the General Accountability Office (GAO).
One of the most serious flaws with Obamacare is that its blizzard of regulations and mandates drives up the cost of insurance for people who buy it on their own.
With implementation of Obamacare set to begin later this year, the vote is largely symbolic. The Senate is highly unlikely to even take up a vote on repeal.
Opponents of President Obama’s health care overhaul have long warned about the cost of the change, both on a national and personal level. But now, even the Associated Press is acknowledging that some of the most ill in our society– whom many thought would now have “free” or dramatically cheaper coverage– may be hit the hardest.
The House will vote again next week to repeal the 2010 health-care reform law, a decision by top Republican leaders designed in part to appease GOP freshmen lawmakers who have not had an opportunity to take a vote on the issue.
The form for individuals is a scant three pages -- a big improvement from the 21-page draft version circulated earlier this year.
The story has blown up on Twitter. “Unbelievable,” tweets TPM’s Brian Beutler. “Flat out incredible,” says Politico’s Ben White. “Obamacare for thee, but not for me,” snarks Ben Domenech. “Two thumbs way, way down,” says Richard Roeper. (Okay, I made the last one up).
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius testified before the Senate Finance Committee on Wednesday. The moment that made headlines was when Sen. Max Baucus, the key author of the health-care law, fretted that the rollout would be “a huge train wreck
"Can the premiums be kept relatively stable and not growing at, you know, 10, 12 percent? The first year is filled with uncertainty,” Emanuel said.
Top executive jobs have been vacant for months at the Department of Health and Human Services key Obamacare insurance program, but officials there refuse to talk about the problem.
The city has a population of 25,136 and a median income of $38,015. It is apparently named after a Wisconsin senator, which seems a bit strange for a city in Iowa
A union is calling for the law's repeal
While many young adults are now covered by the Affordable Care Act, able to remain on their parents' insurance until age 26, the rules are different for those like Cox-Reed, who grew up in the foster care system.
The country's largest movie theater chain probably didn't expect widespread boycotts when it recently sent out a company memo about health care costs
Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont.) said Wednesday he fears a "train wreck" as the Obama administration implements its signature healthcare law.
Is ObamaCare the reform to end all other reforms?
The health-care law could prove to be a boon for temporary-staffing companies as employers outsource jobs to sidestep complex requirements for medical insurance.
West Virginia Democratic Sen. Jay Rockefeller, one of the towering architects of Obamacare, on Tuesday openly criticized program managers for not moving quickly enough to build the system, warning that if it gets off to a bumpy start it will just get worse.
The on-line version of that form requires 60 printed pages to spell out all the queries. (A condensed paper version of the same application fills 21 pages).
The Obama administration now says a special system of exchanges designed to make it easier for small businesses to provide insurance will be delayed an entire year -- to 2015.
If you buy your own health insurance now, you'll be in for a big change when you sign up for coverage in 2014.
Take a look at the 8 point place to replace Obamacare.
“Obamacare” looks increasingly inevitable, but one lawsuit making its way through the court system could pull the plug on the sweeping federal health care law.
With the cost of living on the rise and showing no sign of slowing down, total strangers desperate to save money are moving in together.
Here's a White House spokesman, Josh Earnest, being asked about the comments today:
Actuaries groups offers sobering look at the rising costs for individual insurance coverage plans under Obama health law
A watershed moment in the ongoing disaster of ObamaCare, as Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius finally admits that health insurance premiums are rising because of the President’s health insurance takeover, per the Wall Street Journal:
The Senate voted 79-20 last week to repeal a 2.3 percent excise tax on medical devices, dealing a blow to one of the new taxes imposed to pay for health care reform.
Nowhere is this frustration and distrust more apparent than in the realm of health policy. Three years after the enactment of Obamacare, the level of skepticism about it remains high.
The requirement that contraceptives be covered without co-payment has drawn more than 147,000 public comments, according to an analysis from the Sunlight Foundation.
federal judge has struck down a Missouri law exempting moral objectors from mandatory birth control coverage because it conflicts with an insurance requirement under President Barrack Obama's health care law.
According to a study published in December, meeting the country's health-care needs will require nearly 52,000 additional primary-care physicians by 2025. More than 8,000 of that total will be needed for the more than 27 million people newly insured under the Affordable Care Act.
The Affordable Care Act also envisions a group of navigators, financed by state exchanges, who will—as the name implies—help navigate the insurance system.
Like many rural hospitals, the Brownfield Regional Medical Center has a high percentage of patients on Medicaid, the joint federal and state program that helps low-income and uninsured people pay for medical and custodial care.
When Arkansas governor Mike Beebe was in Washington for the National Governors Association meeting, he made a trip to Health and Human Services.
A federal judge has blocked the Obama administration from requiring Domino’s Pizza founder Tom Monaghan to provide mandatory contraception coverage to his employees under the federal health care law.
Applying for benefits under President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul could be as daunting as doing your taxes.
Pet owners listen up: You may want to start saving more money for veterinarian care this year. The reason goes all the way back to Washington and an unintended consequence from medical reform
When the health care law became law in 2010, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office and the Joint Committee on Taxation provided estimates of the revenues in the law. But those estimates did not give a full picture because some big taxes did not begin until 2013 — and some are delayed even further. That means the tax number is bound to grow each year we move into a different budget window.
The Joint Committee on Taxation recently released a 96 page report on the tax provisions associated with Affordable Care Act. The report describes the 21 tax increases included in Obamacare, totaling $1.058 trillion – a steep increase from initial assessment, according to the Tax Prof Blog.
"We think we owe the American people a balanced budget," Rep. Paul Ryan, chairman of the House Budget Committee, said on Sunday.
A study in the American Journal of Medical Quality found that the ranks of “safety-net physicians” — those willing to see Medicaid and uninsured patients —appears to be at its limit under current circumstances.
Federal tax regulators outlined the rules pertaining to a tax on health insurance companies (and super PACs, to Karl Rove’s chagrin) levied by Obamacare that will cost$58.8 billion over five years before rising after 2018.
In response to skepticism that ObamaCare’s health insurance exchanges will be ready on schedule later this year, Obama administration officials have been swearing up and down, cross their hearts and hope to voucherize Medicare, that ObamaCare’s exchanges — the health insurance portals that are the centerpiece of the law — will indeed be ready on time.
Millions of lower-income workers may gain access to employer-sponsored health insurance under the Affordable Care Act—but they may decide not to purchase that coverage.
A look at changes under the Affordable Care Act.
Check out a fact check of some of the phases of Obamacare rollout.
Brace yourself for longer lines at the doctor's office.
The rule, which has raised concern at a number of other companies, would restrict annual limits on insurance policies. The trade-off in these plans has historically been that while payouts were capped, premiums were low.
An iconic American brand has come out against a key Obamacare provision requiring some companies to expand their health insurance coverage.
Instead of paying for more poor people to have health insurance, S.C. Republicans offered to pay hospitals more to keep poor people out of emergency rooms.
The Obama administration said that it will operate federal online health insurance marketplaces in 26 of the 50 U.S. states with little or no input from local state officials.
Every time one of the warnings voiced by Obamacare’s critics before the law was enacted has come true, the law’s most eager champions (i.e. the political press) have seemed deeply surprised. It’s almost as if they just weren’t listening, isn’t it?
Big tobacco companies and anti-cancer activists are standing in opposition to a part of the Affordable Care Act that allows insurance companies to charge smokers 50 percent more than patients who do not use tobacco
Over the past couple of weeks, many insurance companies have provided guidance in their investor calls that premiums for insurance plans being sold in the individual market could go up as much as 50 percent on average.
About 10,000 Virginia public employees are poised to see their hours cut back as Gov. Bob McDonnell continues to find ways around what he said were President Obama's costly health care reforms.
Secrecy shrouds President Obama's $2 billion program to launch 24 new co-ops designed to compete with private insurance companies under the chief executive's landmark health care reform.
Complying with the raging tsunami of new Obamacare rules and regulations will cost American businesses and families 127 million hours annually, enough time to carve out another 1,039 Mount Rushmores which took 14 years complete, according to a new House report.
2013 will be a crucial year in the implementation of Obamacare, and a central focus of the Obama administration. Thus far, the Obama administration’s emphasis has been on standing up the program’s basic edifice for the long run rather than making sure it rolls out smoothly. Once erected, the law’s dictates will transform the underlying architecture of the American health care system – perhaps permanently.Given these stakes, Obamacare’s critics cannot afford to spend the next year on the sidelines and accept its intrusive excesses as the new status quo in American healthcare.
President Obama's health care law will push 7 million people out of their job-based insurance coverage — nearly twice the previous estimate, according to the latest estimates from the Congressional Budget Office released Tuesday.
In a final regulation issued Wednesday, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) assumed that under Obamacare the cheapest health insurance plan available in 2016 for a family will cost $20,000 for the year.
What's next for the implementation of "ObamaCare"? Take a look at the history of the Affordable Care Act and what laws are ahead through 2016.
After decades of debate and legal challenges, national health care reform moves onward. Next up: immigration reform. The two are linked. Immigrants -- both those who are documented and those who are not -- are less likely to have health insurance than their U.S.-born counterparts. Almost half the documented immigrants in the U.S. do not have health coverage, according to 2011 Employee Benefit Research Institute statistics .
Don't expect to hear more about an Obamacare surcharge from Denny's franchisee John Metz.
The owner of Olive Garden and Red Lobster restaurants is putting more workers on part-time status in a test aimed at limiting costs from President Barack Obama's health care law.
In the choice between either cutting workers' hours or settling for a smaller profit margin, some people expect most companies will be more concerned with their own bottom lines than with those of their workers.
If you've got anywhere between 101 and 1,000 employees, listen up: Your health care costs are expected to rise 9.5 percent because of federal health care reform.
While health care is still a hot issue in the election, in the coming months consumers will be facing a health insurance decision of their own: open enrollment. That’s the period, usually in the last quarter of the year, when workers with insurance can change coverage options without having to prove their health status.
Bob Laszewski, a former insurance executive, has taken a look at how small businesses might dodge a number of the health law’s (potentially expensive) mandates: They could self-insure.
Like many Republican governors, Jan Brewer of Arizona is a stinging critic of President Obama’s health care law. When the Supreme Court upheld it in June, she called the ruling “an overreaching and unaffordable assault on states’ rights and individual liberty.”
Congress‘ official scorekeeper said Wednesday that 30 million people will be uninsured when President Obama’s health care law goes fully into effect, including six million Americans who are expected to pay a tax penalty — about two million more than originally forecast when the law was passed in 2010.
The founder of Hobby Lobby, David Green said during a conference call that his family's faith is being challenged by the federal government.
In a forum at the Democratic convention in Charlotte, North Carolina, former Michigan Democratic congressman Bart Stupak made a surprising admission: The White House had walked away from the compromise it had earlier struck with him on the abortion language in Obamacare.
In the Obama administration’s effort to transform the American health-care system, perhaps the biggest challenge is whether Obamacare can reign in costs without sacrificing quality.
Paul Ryan accused President Obama on Wednesday of raiding Medicare to fund "Obamacare," a common campaign attack for the Romney-Ryan campaign, at a rally in Adel, Iowa.
Republican vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan is barnstorming the country, promising to repeal every provision of the Affordable Care Act if the Romney-Ryan ticket is elected. But a letter he wrote to the Obama administration may undermine this message.
In four southern states where maternal or pregnancy-related mortality is higher than average and insurance coverage is lower, health authorities worry about governors' decisions to decline Medicaid expansion.
Comparing it to the battle of the Alamo, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott said Wednesday though the state lost the health care fight in the U.S. Supreme Court, there are other ways to dismantle the landmark legislation critics call Obamacare.
After running away from Obamacare since 2010, Democrats embraced the law and tried to wrap it in new packaging in hopes it will sell better.
There’s been a good deal of punditry to the effect that Obama and Dems will have to run from the health law this cycle; Obamacare remains unpopular and a symbol of Obama taking his eye off the ball of the economy; etc. This doesn’t really look like running away from the health law, does it?
Guilford College in North Carolina will likely be forced to charge students 75 percent more for health insurance in order to comply with federal regulations under President Barack Obama’s sweeping healthcare law, college administrators told Campus Reform.
In a book set for publication Tuesday, a politics and government professor at The Citadel claims President Obama’s 2009 health care reform law was, in part, a union-driven effort to organize 21 million health care workers.
Take a closer look at “gaffes” made by President Obama and former Gov. Mitt Romney. Find out what they really said — without the selective editing
The District and Maryland are moving aggressively to implement virtual markets of insurance plans, becoming national leaders in carrying out President Obama’s vision for health care reform, while their Republican neighbors in Virginia remain less than eager to implement the controversial law.
The health-care overhaul provides a safety net for young adult children, who can now stay on their parents’ health plans until they reach age 26. But it doesn’t guarantee that their parents’ plan will cover a common medical condition that many young women face: pregnancy.
It's the term critics invented for President Obama’s health law, more properly known as the Affordable Care Act of 2010. Republicans long ago successfully pasted the president’s name on the program to deride it as a big-government boondoggle. But now an unlikely group has adopted the moniker: Democrats.
Obama administration officials are getting ready to set up and operate new health insurance markets in about half the states, where local officials appear unwilling or unable to do so.
Despite the Supreme Court decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act, a new poll shows that 46 percent of Americans admit they can still be persuaded to change their opinion of the law.
If you thought it was hard getting a doctor's appointment now, just wait until 30 million more Americans join the line.
U.S. District Judge John L. Kane issued an injunction that temporarily prohibits the Obama administration from forcing a Christian family in Colorado to act against its faith in the way it operates its heating, ventilation and air-conditioning business.
About one in 10 employers plan to drop health coverage when key provisions of the new health care law kick in less than two years from now, according to a survey.
Seven attorneys general trying to block the federal health care law's requirement for contraception coverage saw their lawsuit dismissed Tuesday by a federal judge who said they didn't have standing to file it.
A doctor representing the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons told The Daily Caller that “physicians have reached a tipping point” under current health care laws, as they cannot both care for their patients and comply with mandated regulations.
Americans can refuse to comply with its command that they obtain government-approved medical coverage.
Seven attorneys general trying to block the federal health care law's requirement for contraception coverage saw their lawsuit dismissed by a federal judge who said they didn't have standing to file it.
With the Supreme Court upholding the health care law, millions of Americans now face the prospect of getting health insurance or paying Uncle Sam a penalty/tax. That could mean an extra car payment each month for families not paying for coverage now.
The immediate reaction on Wall Street to last month’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling upholding President Obama’s health care law was to buy hospital stocks and dump health insurance stocks. But at least one analyst expects the long-term outcome to be exactly opposite of that
Results from a Gallup poll show that voters' beliefs about the ACA's anticipated effects are highly colored by partisan affiliation.
The state of Maryland is looking for ways to raise up to $50 million annually though an assortment of taxes and fees to finance the state's health benefits exchange, an insurance marketplace that the federal health care law requires states to have operational by 2014.
Federal trade regulators warned Friday that scam artists are using the healthcare law to ask for consumers' personal information over the phone.
According to the latest estimates, President Obama’s health care law, also known as “Obamacare,” will cost around $2.6 trillion over the next 10 years, nearly $1.7 trillion more than Obama’s initial promise of $900 billion.
The U.S. Supreme Court decision upholding the 2010 health-care law’s individual insurance mandate as a tax opens a “brave new world” for Congress to impose levies, said Representative Dave Camp, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee.
While some see the new healthcare law as a source of controversy, tax preparation companies see it as an opportunity, hoping it will bring in millions of new and confused customers.
Can the Internal Revenue Service police President Barack Obama’s health care mandate while simultaneously collecting all the taxes for running the federal government?
The Service Employees International Union announced it would run radio ads in the battleground states of Nevada, Virginia and Colorado aimed at telling the Spanish-language community it should back Obamacare
Rep. Phil Gingrey compared the 2010 healthcare law to Boss Hogg, the crooked commissioner of the fictional Hazzard County, Ga., in the 1970s TV series "The Dukes of Hazzard."
The bill is called the Religious Freedom Tax Repeal Act of 2012.
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