Author Topic: 2017 ACA plan info now available  (Read 26269 times)

Gretamom

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #100 on: November 05, 2016, 11:14:02 AM »
I agree Obamacare is a joke. In Wisconsin, where I live, it is really bad. We were not able to renew our last insurance as of June 1, 2016 so we went to see an insurance broker. We did not qualify for any subsidies & the best plan we could get for two non-smoking 40 year old adults and three kids was $1850 a month with $10,000 family deductible.  Of course this doesn't include dental, vision, or any prescriptions. We would have to shell out $32,200 a year before we met the deductible. This was before the increase which I have heard in our state is about 22% (the same plan is probably about $2250 with the increase) It's completely crazy & out of control.

At what point do people just take the penalty? 

Luckily, my husband got a second job at the hospital working only 16 hours a week and they offer health insurance to their part-time employees.


Why would you go to a broker when NONE of their plans are eligible for subsidies and you can compare all the plans on one site easily.

We don't qualify for the subsidies and we were just trying to see if anything else was available, anything that we hadn't thought of. The best (or cheapest) plan on the Health Care Exchange is a bronze one at $1648 a month with a 6,800 per person or $12,800 group deductible.

CanuckExpat

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #101 on: November 05, 2016, 12:52:40 PM »
We don't qualify for the subsidies and we were just trying to see if anything else was available, anything that we hadn't thought of. The best (or cheapest) plan on the Health Care Exchange is a bronze one at $1648 a month with a 6,800 per person or $12,800 group deductible.

If you want to look outside the box (aka non aca, but possibly compliant), there are a few different options listed here that you can stitch together: http://www.rverinsurance.com/2017-health-insurance/

Most of the things they discuss sound like they would need further investigation. They are targeting a transient population, which doesn't really fit well into the ACA system, hence discussing other options.
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jim555

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #102 on: November 05, 2016, 01:51:35 PM »
Maybe look at Catastrophic plans.  If you get a hardship exemption, or under 30, then these plans are an option.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #103 on: November 05, 2016, 01:51:53 PM »
One strategy to lower your AGI so that you can qualify for subsidies is to put as much money as possible into your 401K, Traditional IRA, and HSA accounts. Perhaps everyone knows this already though.

Frankies Girl

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #104 on: November 07, 2016, 02:45:44 PM »
So update to my situation:

I received an email saying my requested information (to resolve my proof of income due to a substantial drop) was approved and verified.

Took them less than a week. Super cool cause I was expecting the merry-go-round of submit/request/submit and denial of subsidy.

I sent them my tax return from 2015, and the included the identifying bar code (they had one in my papers for the conditional application and stated to include the bar code to expedite identification of my case file) and then wrote a letter stating that I quit working in March 2015, husband laid off in April 2016 and his unemployment ran out in September 2016, and we would be using investments/retirement accounts for our living expenses in 2017. So as such, the line 7 on the tax return (wages, tips, etc) will be zero dollars; no earned income. And the rest of the income on our tax return clearly showed we had retirement and dividend income reported (and it was over the amount for the Medicaid cutoff which would screw us out of ACA eligibility as our state didn't expand Medicaid).

And then stated again that to the best of my abilities, my income estimate is accurate.

So that was it. Approved for our subsidy. Something finally worked the way it was supposed to. :D

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Spork

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #105 on: November 07, 2016, 04:32:36 PM »
So update to my situation:

I received an email saying my requested information (to resolve my proof of income due to a substantial drop) was approved and verified.

Took them less than a week. Super cool cause I was expecting the merry-go-round of submit/request/submit and denial of subsidy.

I sent them my tax return from 2015, and the included the identifying bar code (they had one in my papers for the conditional application and stated to include the bar code to expedite identification of my case file) and then wrote a letter stating that I quit working in March 2015, husband laid off in April 2016 and his unemployment ran out in September 2016, and we would be using investments/retirement accounts for our living expenses in 2017. So as such, the line 7 on the tax return (wages, tips, etc) will be zero dollars; no earned income. And the rest of the income on our tax return clearly showed we had retirement and dividend income reported (and it was over the amount for the Medicaid cutoff which would screw us out of ACA eligibility as our state didn't expand Medicaid).

And then stated again that to the best of my abilities, my income estimate is accurate.

So that was it. Approved for our subsidy. Something finally worked the way it was supposed to. :D

That is fabulous news!  I'm expecting to have issues re-signing up... but maybe it won't be so bad.  (I'm still waffling on plans, so ... haven't pulled the trigger yet.)
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Threshkin

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #106 on: November 07, 2016, 05:57:57 PM »
I have been researching Colorado ACA plans and am seeing rates from ~$950 to 1300/month for narrow coverage catastrophic (Bronze) plans with around $11,000 in deductibles (!!!). No dental or vision coverage included.  This is for 2 people 59 & 52, non-smokers.

This evening I received my COBRA package.  The same HSA plan I currently have through United Health is priced at $832/month.

In our case it looks like COBRA is the way to go.

seattlecyclone

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #107 on: November 07, 2016, 10:17:14 PM »
Those prices you're quoting are likely the sticker price for the plan. If you're planning to have an AGI under 400% of the poverty line (about $64k for a couple), you'll be eligible for premium subsidies. These subsidies are designed to make the second-cheapest silver plan have a net cost of at most 9.66% of your income. At $64k income, that comes out to $6,182/year, or $515/month. That would be the net cost of the second-cheapest silver plan. Any plan with a sticker price less than the second-cheapest silver plan in your area (which should include many bronze plans) would have a net cost less than this.
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ClaycordJCA

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #108 on: November 09, 2016, 12:31:05 AM »
Apparently we won't need to worry about 2018 rates given the very likely election result. There go my FIRE plans.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 12:33:03 AM by ClaycordJCA »

jim555

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #109 on: November 09, 2016, 01:15:12 AM »
Time will tell.  I don't think the Republicans are looking forward to throwing millions off their health insurance.  They talk a lot, actions are another matter entirely.

soccerluvof4

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #110 on: November 09, 2016, 06:19:54 AM »
^ I would totally agree. Its all about getting even. If they can rename the plan and make it better than they will consider themselves bigger winners than knocking people off of coverage. I am hoping this surprises to the upside.
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AdrianC

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #111 on: November 09, 2016, 06:22:13 AM »
Obamacare will be repealed. It's one of their signature promises.

I'm guessing some features will be retained by whatever replaces it. I'm certainly not counting on any subsidies.

tooqk4u22

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #112 on: November 09, 2016, 06:40:46 AM »
Obamacare will be repealed. It's one of their signature promises.

I'm guessing some features will be retained by whatever replaces it. I'm certainly not counting on any subsidies.

Yup....FIRE budget just increased by $10k.   Not really, because I wasn't comfortable relying exclusively on ACA due not only to potential political winds but the fact that it was also falling apart on its own.   I am worried though for people with pre-existing conditions.
« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 06:45:37 AM by tooqk4u22 »

rayt168

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #113 on: November 09, 2016, 07:05:49 AM »
Obamacare will be repealed. It's one of their signature promises.

I'm guessing some features will be retained by whatever replaces it. I'm certainly not counting on any subsidies.

I definitely agree with the above statement.  I was planning on FIRE next year pending the election outcome.  Now, it's going to be a wait & see what happens with Obamacare. 

Malum Prohibitum

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #114 on: November 09, 2016, 07:36:37 AM »
My healthcare premiums used to be so low that I did not even really think much about them.  Recently, double digit percentage increases every year have made the monthly premiums a crushing burden, the largest monthly expense I have. 

My current policy and company are no longer available for 2017.

In fact, on the exchange, the cheapest plan, the CHEAPEST, for 2017 is 35% higher than what I am paying now.

I flirt every year with the 400% line (self employed) so I never know if I am going to receive a subsidy or not.

What idiot thought it would be a good idea to charge me, a guy who hits the gym 6 days a week and eats and extraordinarily healthy diet, the exact same premium as some diabetic Aids infected fat slob ]MOD EDIT: Come on.] who sits on the couch all day eating processed wheat based desserts?  It does not take a Nobel prize in economics to predict what was going to happen to my premiums in that scenario, but this is exactly what the ACA did.

It would be like charging the exact same monthly premium for car insurance to a safe driver with no record and a guy with several DUIs and accidents.  Complete lunacy.

In my area there is only one provider left on the exchange.  All of the others have fled.  They are losing money even with the higher premiums.

You have to love government interference in the marketplace.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2016, 07:09:18 AM by arebelspy »

AdrianC

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #115 on: November 09, 2016, 08:16:50 AM »
Obamacare will be repealed. It's one of their signature promises.

I'm guessing some features will be retained by whatever replaces it. I'm certainly not counting on any subsidies.

Yup....FIRE budget just increased by $10k.   Not really, because I wasn't comfortable relying exclusively on ACA due not only to potential political winds but the fact that it was also falling apart on its own.   I am worried though for people with pre-existing conditions.

I didn't include any subsidies in my FIRE budget either. $25K for a family of three isn't looking good ;-)

geekette

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #116 on: November 09, 2016, 09:05:32 AM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition? 

Gin1984

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #117 on: November 09, 2016, 09:07:31 AM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition?
Me too. 

AdrianC

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #118 on: November 09, 2016, 10:47:26 AM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition?

That too.

Threshkin

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #119 on: November 09, 2016, 12:41:51 PM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition?

Not me. (knock on wood)

But my concern is that the only plans left are "narrow coverage" type plans.  We only are covered if we use a very limited set of doctors in the local area.  So much for slow traveling around the US.  Only emergencies are covered out of network and even that coverage is limited.  For example, if we get hurt in an accident, the emergency room is covered but if we need follow up surgery we have to get back to our coverage area before we are covered.

jim555

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #120 on: November 09, 2016, 01:46:58 PM »
On Wednesday, after the GOP won a majority in Congress and the White House, Majority leader Mitch McConnell signalled they would move to repeal Obsmacare immediately. Politico reported: Majority Leader Mitch McConnell signaled the Senate would move swiftly to repeal Obamacare now that the GOP Congress will have a Republican president next year. "It's pretty high on our agenda as you know," the Kentucky Republican said on Wednesday. "I would be shocked if we didn't move forward and keep our commitment to the American people."

So they are going to repeal and what about the replace part? 
Oops never got done, my bad.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #121 on: November 09, 2016, 03:26:24 PM »
My healthcare premiums used to be so low that I did not even really think much about them.  Recently, double digit percentage increases every year have made the monthly premiums a crushing burden, the largest monthly expense I have. 

My current policy and company are no longer available for 2017.

In fact, on the exchange, the cheapest plan, the CHEAPEST, for 2017 is 35% higher than what I am paying now.

I flirt every year with the 400% line (self employed) so I never know if I am going to receive a subsidy or not.

What idiot thought it would be a good idea to charge me, a guy who hits the gym 6 days a week and eats and extraordinarily healthy diet, the exact same premium as some diabetic Aids infected fat slob who sits on the couch all day eating processed wheat based desserts?  It does not take a Nobel prize in economics to predict what was going to happen to my premiums in that scenario, but this is exactly what the ACA did.

It would be like charging the exact same monthly premium for car insurance to a safe driver with no record and a guy with several DUIs and accidents.  Complete lunacy.

In my area there is only one provider left on the exchange.  All of the others have fled.  They are losing money even with the higher premiums.

You have to love government interference in the marketplace.

And after the repeal of Obamacare, and you buy health insurance privately, your premiums will also go up double digits. As you get older your premiums go up.

RedwoodDreams

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #122 on: November 09, 2016, 03:30:16 PM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition?

That too.

This is a really sad day for me and my family. I have a life-threatening pre-existing condition, and my son is also uninsurable because he has Crohn's disease. ACA meant we both would never be without medical care, even if premiums continued to skyrocket. As a parent, this gave me so much comfort on my son's behalf.

I feel that Americans just threw each other under the proverbial bus and it truly puzzles me since illness does not align with party affiliation. Time to think about living abroad.

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #123 on: November 09, 2016, 03:38:22 PM »
It's not the subsidies that worry me, it's the access.  Late 50's - who doesn't have a pre-existing condition?

That too.

This is a really sad day for me and my family. I have a life-threatening pre-existing condition, and my son is also uninsurable because he has Crohn's disease. ACA meant we both would never be without medical care, even if premiums continued to skyrocket. As a parent, this gave me so much comfort on my son's behalf.

I feel that Americans just threw each other under the proverbial bus and it truly puzzles me since illness does not align with party affiliation. Time to think about living abroad.

I'm so sorry that you are going through that.
Maybe write a letter to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell about this situation.

azure975

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #124 on: November 09, 2016, 03:44:10 PM »
I always worried a little in the back of my mind that the FIRE naysayers were right, that it would be impossible to retire early because of all the various things that could happen. Today I feel like they may have won. If I can't obtain healthcare that's not tied to my employment (doesn't need to be subsidized, just available since my husband and I have pre-existing conditions) then I can't FIRE. The gloomy side of me thinks, "Why did I even bother? I should have just resigned myself to working until 65 like everyone else." The more rational side of me thinks it will be okay though. From what I've heard both Trump and Pence said they will not repeal the pre-existing conditions clause (though they won't necessarily stop insurance companies from jacking rates through the roof). I think the poor and lower middle class will suffer the most. It convinces me more than ever that I need a lot of extra padding in my stache.

rayt168

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #125 on: November 09, 2016, 03:56:47 PM »
From what I've heard both Trump and Pence said they will not repeal the pre-existing conditions clause (though they won't necessarily stop insurance companies from jacking rates through the roof).

IMO - this would only be a slight improvement from pre ACA conditions.   If the monthly premium is too high, that would overwhelm most people's budgets.  It would be very interesting to see what the GOP comes up with as an ACA replacement (if any).


geekette

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #126 on: November 09, 2016, 04:29:34 PM »
It doesn't really matter what Trump and Pence say, since Mitch McConnell "...gleefully described the repeal of the 2010 Affordable Care Act as an “item pretty high on our agenda.”"

v8rx7guy

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #127 on: November 09, 2016, 05:05:34 PM »
If I had to make a prediction, Obamacare will be repealed and replaced with the Ben Carson plan, it will be actually affordable and MMM readers will rejoice.

waltworks

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #128 on: November 09, 2016, 07:30:43 PM »
If you just repeal the mandate part, and leave the pre-existing requirement (which, agreed, Trump has stated he supports) you just end up with a situation where no insurance companies can function at all - because I, and everyone else, will just buy "insurance" when we actually get sick/need healthcare.

That's a quick road to total healthcare implosion/Medicare-for-all if I've ever heard of one, so it will be interesting to see what the "replace" part of the repeal looks like.

Our FIRE plan (with small children) is now completely off the table, FWIW. My wife will most likely have to go back to work, as I can't in good conscience leave the kids without health insurance.

I also agree, this is exactly the sort of situation that people who talk about not worrying about 4% SWR failures are talking about - black swans that can totally disrupt your plans regardless of the health of your finances/portfolio.

-W

Metric Mouse

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #129 on: November 09, 2016, 07:42:22 PM »
If you just repeal the mandate part, and leave the pre-existing requirement (which, agreed, Trump has stated he supports) you just end up with a situation where no insurance companies can function at all - because I, and everyone else, will just buy "insurance" when we actually get sick/need healthcare.

That's a quick road to total healthcare implosion/Medicare-for-all if I've ever heard of one, so it will be interesting to see what the "replace" part of the repeal looks like.

Our FIRE plan (with small children) is now completely off the table, FWIW. My wife will most likely have to go back to work, as I can't in good conscience leave the kids without health insurance.

I also agree, this is exactly the sort of situation that people who talk about not worrying about 4% SWR failures are talking about - black swans that can totally disrupt your plans regardless of the health of your finances/portfolio.

-W

What if the open enrollment periods were kept? One could only enroll during certain times of the year - then it wouldn't be substantially different than the current system (where one can pay a small penalty to avoid coverage) while ensuring fewer people are able to "game" the system.  Win/Win for both sides?
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iris lily

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #130 on: November 09, 2016, 08:07:48 PM »
Has anyone ever used an insurance broker? Of am I better off just doing it myself, since I tend to be an over-researcher?
In my state, using a broker is ok and we still can get subsidies. The broker is paid by insurance co.

I chose to use a broker because DH simply cannot speak about the ACA with any degree of rationality. We needed a third party to lead us through it, I have no patience to read pages of text and/or risk no coverage and fight with DH about it, We are very easy to cover, so it is not as though we have unique needs where plans need to be compared carefully. We signed for coverage to begin November 1"and are still negotiating with the ACA eejits about eligibility.

I am glad to have a broker with whom to consult. The bureaucracy makes me insane (but I dont think it is any worse than any other insurance co.)
« Last Edit: November 09, 2016, 08:27:37 PM by iris lily »

waltworks

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #131 on: November 09, 2016, 08:10:05 PM »
Well, without a mandate, most healthy people will (somewhat rationally) opt out. Folks with preexisting conditions will opt in, so premiums will be totally insane in a hurry since you're only "insuring" people who are actively in need of lots of health care. At that point you're not talking about insurance at all and the whole system would presumably revert to pay-as-you-go (and the insurance companies would all go out of business, something I certainly wouldn't shed a tear over).

I don't think the open enrollment periods thing would work for this reason. It would be a disincentive to skipping insurance, but certainly not as much of one as a tax penalty (and even that hasn't been enough to convince healthy people to participate, as seen in the skyrocketing rates).

The bottom line is really that if you want a functional insurance market in this case (as for auto insurance) you probably have to require people to have it.

For the self-employed/FIRE crowd, this is basically (in the short team, at least) going to mean bumping up your required 'stache by $200k+. Major bummer. C'est la vie.

-W


h2ogal

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #132 on: November 09, 2016, 08:28:42 PM »
This definitely sucks.  Once the replacement plan details come out we will have to start a thread to brainstorm ways to optimize the new system.  I trust there are a lot of smart folks in the MMM community who will help figure this out.

For right now, my advice is don't panic, as the transition will surely take a lot of time, time you can use to adjust your plans as needed.  Keep your FIRE savings plans going, including maxing out any HSA contributions, those may be a big part of the new system.

I just FIRED this summer, but DH has a small business (with only 5 employees).   The cost of insuring a family of 3 on a silver plan will be around 1K per month.  It's about the same on the NY exchange without a subsidy.


Metric Mouse

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #133 on: November 09, 2016, 09:49:49 PM »
Well, without a mandate, most healthy people will (somewhat rationally) opt out. Folks with preexisting conditions will opt in, so premiums will be totally insane in a hurry since you're only "insuring" people who are actively in need of lots of health care. At that point you're not talking about insurance at all and the whole system would presumably revert to pay-as-you-go (and the insurance companies would all go out of business, something I certainly wouldn't shed a tear over).

I don't think the open enrollment periods thing would work for this reason. It would be a disincentive to skipping insurance, but certainly not as much of one as a tax penalty (and even that hasn't been enough to convince healthy people to participate, as seen in the skyrocketing rates).

The bottom line is really that if you want a functional insurance market in this case (as for auto insurance) you probably have to require people to have it.

For the self-employed/FIRE crowd, this is basically (in the short team, at least) going to mean bumping up your required 'stache by $200k+. Major bummer. C'est la vie.

-W

Sounds like maybe health insurance isn't the right answer after all. Do many other developed nations even have health insurance like America does?
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waltworks

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #134 on: November 09, 2016, 10:15:48 PM »
Sounds like maybe health insurance isn't the right answer after all. Do many other developed nations even have health insurance like America does?

There is a lot of variation but basically all the other industrialized countries on earth use some form of government-provided healthcare (sometimes with supplemental private hospitals/insurance mixed in in varying ways). So the US is pretty unique here.

Overall, US health care is awesome if you're wealthy, and very very bad if you're poor. Our results/$ spent compare poorly with basically everyone but there's some room to quibble about what constitutes good results (ie, we are great at really complex brain surgery but pretty awful at doing simple stuff to keep babies alive/healthy for poor moms).

-W

Malum Prohibitum

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #135 on: November 10, 2016, 06:45:35 AM »
My healthcare premiums used to be so low that I did not even really think much about them.  Recently, double digit percentage increases every year have made the monthly premiums a crushing burden, the largest monthly expense I have. 

My current policy and company are no longer available for 2017.

In fact, on the exchange, the cheapest plan, the CHEAPEST, for 2017 is 35% higher than what I am paying now.

I flirt every year with the 400% line (self employed) so I never know if I am going to receive a subsidy or not.

What idiot thought it would be a good idea to charge me, a guy who hits the gym 6 days a week and eats and extraordinarily healthy diet, the exact same premium as some diabetic Aids infected fat slob who sits on the couch all day eating processed wheat based desserts?  It does not take a Nobel prize in economics to predict what was going to happen to my premiums in that scenario, but this is exactly what the ACA did.

It would be like charging the exact same monthly premium for car insurance to a safe driver with no record and a guy with several DUIs and accidents.  Complete lunacy.

In my area there is only one provider left on the exchange.  All of the others have fled.  They are losing money even with the higher premiums.

You have to love government interference in the marketplace.

And after the repeal of Obamacare, and you buy health insurance privately, your premiums will also go up double digits. As you get older your premiums go up.

It is interesting how you pretend I did not have years of experience with this prior to the ACA, and therefore have knowledge of how this market acted before the ACA, and how my premiums increased before the ACA.

Back then, my premiums were not tied to "some diabetic Aids infected fat slob who sits on the couch all day eating processed wheat based desserts."  They were tied to my health and the risk to the insurance company that me and my family represented. 

Just to address what you said more directly, I never once experienced the kind of increases I have experienced each and every year since the ACA went into effect (and the year before, as insurance companies tried to predict the cost and vastly underestimated it even with a massive increase in premiums).

Nice try, though.

Reality intrudes on your hypothetical.

Livewell

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #136 on: November 10, 2016, 08:43:10 AM »
I recall health insurance costs going up quite a bit before ACA.

The underlying problem is health costs in this country.  The ACA sought to get more people in the insurance system, while providing some very real benefits for all of us like requiring coverage for pre existing conditions.  It needs some fixing but going back to the old system is not a step forward, in terms of costs or benefits for all.

Speaking of the old system and looking to be pragmatic about the ACA's chances, for you older FIRE folks what did you do before it?

waltworks

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #137 on: November 10, 2016, 09:33:15 AM »
Yeah, I remember my healthcare premiums in the 1990s quite well. They went up double digits every year then, too.

I do some budget analysis for the school district here and the cost of health care has been squeezing out everything else for the last 20 years. It's about 1/4 of the budget now. I'd assume in another decade of this it will be 1/2-2/3.

So basically, those of us who have been paying attention know that healthcare costs were rising fast long before the ACA. I personally think the ACA did little/nothing to help with that, but my memory isn't so short that I'll go so far as to blame the law for recent cost increases.

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #138 on: November 10, 2016, 10:02:16 AM »
Sounds like maybe health insurance isn't the right answer after all. Do many other developed nations even have health insurance like America does?

There is a lot of variation but basically all the other industrialized countries on earth use some form of government-provided healthcare (sometimes with supplemental private hospitals/insurance mixed in in varying ways). So the US is pretty unique here.

Overall, US health care is awesome if you're wealthy, and very very bad if you're poor. Our results/$ spent compare poorly with basically everyone but there's some room to quibble about what constitutes good results (ie, we are great at really complex brain surgery but pretty awful at doing simple stuff to keep babies alive/healthy for poor moms).

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Actually it is pretty good if you are poor because you just don't pay for the care.  It is very bad for the middle class who have too much money to qualify as "poor".

DavidAnnArbor

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #139 on: November 10, 2016, 02:22:50 PM »
If you're truly middle class, and not really upper upper middle class, and you're able to save money, then you can lower your AGI down enough to qualify for subsidies, as I did.

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #140 on: November 10, 2016, 03:53:46 PM »

Speaking of the old system and looking to be pragmatic about the ACA's chances, for you older FIRE folks what did you do before it?

In the 2006-2009 time frame, I wasn't fire, but I took a 3 year "sabbatical."  I had a catastrophic plan that was similar to an ACA bronze plan.  The cost for the 2006-09 era plan with no subsidy was approximately the cost of the plan today with a subsidy.
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CanuckExpat

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #141 on: November 10, 2016, 04:03:50 PM »

Speaking of the old system and looking to be pragmatic about the ACA's chances, for you older FIRE folks what did you do before it?

In the 2006-2009 time frame, I wasn't fire, but I took a 3 year "sabbatical."  I had a catastrophic plan that was similar to an ACA bronze plan.  The cost for the 2006-09 era plan with no subsidy was approximately the cost of the plan today with a subsidy.

My understanding is roughly pre ACA, you were ok to FIRE with healthcare as long as you didn't need any of the added ACA clauses/protections, i.e. no pre-existing conditions, not planning to get pregnant, not very old. Probably will also add the caveat that you were probably ok as long as / until you got sick and then needed continuing coverage or another health plan.

If you fit that "generally healthy" mold, you could probably buy cheap catastrophic coverage and not worry about it (again, assuming you weren't going to have something in the future which would then count as a pre-existing condition).

Hopefully that answers the question. I'm sure we can now continue pointless arguing about legislation that has yet to pass, or pointless political attacks :) 
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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #142 on: November 10, 2016, 04:05:46 PM »
If it is repealed and if the system that replaces it (or lack of a system) removes the possibility for reliable individual insurance, it is quite likely that employer based insurance will not change much.  Some employers offer health insurance to part time workers as long as the employee works at least 20 to 24 hours per week.  It's not much of a consolation, but it's something....

Livewell

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #143 on: November 10, 2016, 08:41:22 PM »
Thanks for the feedback on pre ACA days.  I've always had employer health care so never thought about it until I started making FIRE plans.  I'll be relatively young (mid 40s) when I pull the trigger but have young kids so a decent health care plan is needed. 

Perhaps CA will make its own "Romneycare" as Covered CA was doing well from everything I heard.  Likely there will be a decent market where I live in the Bay Area with the population density.


azure975

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #144 on: November 10, 2016, 09:05:07 PM »
Thanks for the feedback on pre ACA days.  I've always had employer health care so never thought about it until I started making FIRE plans. 
Same. I've only been really serious about FIRE for the past couple years so I just took for granted that I would be able to purchase reasonable healthcare via the ACA. I feel like my entire FIRE plan has been shaken to the core. I still believe we will be able to retire early but I'm padding my numbers a lot more to account for the cost of healthcare and long term care. I've always been extra cautious and risk averse so I could never get on board with lean-FIRE or some of the numbers people quote here, and I feel sort of validated (I wish I weren't though). It's better to prepare for shit and not need it than the opposite.
« Last Edit: November 10, 2016, 09:10:03 PM by azure975 »

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #145 on: November 10, 2016, 10:12:34 PM »
Thanks for the feedback on pre ACA days.  I've always had employer health care so never thought about it until I started making FIRE plans. 
Same. I've only been really serious about FIRE for the past couple years so I just took for granted that I would be able to purchase reasonable healthcare via the ACA. I feel like my entire FIRE plan has been shaken to the core. I still believe we will be able to retire early but I'm padding my numbers a lot more to account for the cost of healthcare and long term care. I've always been extra cautious and risk averse so I could never get on board with lean-FIRE or some of the numbers people quote here, and I feel sort of validated (I wish I weren't though). It's better to prepare for shit and not need it than the opposite.

Is health insurance going away? Or do you require specific aspects of the ACA to survive? I'm under the impression that, at worst, if the ACA gets defunded or repealed, health insurance will still exist, it will just be slightly different than it is now. Plan prices were going up before ACA, and during the ACA, so even an increase in cost is neither unexpected nor unreasonable.
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waltworks

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #146 on: November 10, 2016, 10:22:56 PM »
ACA going away will return us (those of us who are not getting healthcare from an employer) to:
-Denial of coverage at all if you have a preexisting condition (that used to include *pregnancy*, among other things)
-Much higher rates than employer coverage for similar plans (this was always the case before the ACA)
-Much higher premiums for FIRE folks with low income/spending who could get subsidies under ACA.

Don't get me wrong, I regard the ACA as a bit of a joke/failure. In the richest and most powerful country on earth we should just be able to give basic healthcare to everyone and not even think twice, no need for insurance company middlemen or artificially messing with your MAGI to qualify for subsidies, etc.

But just wiping it out and not coming up with some coherent plan to replace *in advance* is probably irresponsible.

The bottom line is that we want people healthy so they can contribute to the economy, start businesses, innovate, etc. Keeping people healthy and alive is a macroeconomic no-brainer and it's also a moral thing to do in a time of plentiful resources. How people don't think of it that way I have no idea.

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azure975

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #147 on: November 10, 2016, 10:52:02 PM »
Thanks for the feedback on pre ACA days.  I've always had employer health care so never thought about it until I started making FIRE plans. 
Same. I've only been really serious about FIRE for the past couple years so I just took for granted that I would be able to purchase reasonable healthcare via the ACA. I feel like my entire FIRE plan has been shaken to the core. I still believe we will be able to retire early but I'm padding my numbers a lot more to account for the cost of healthcare and long term care. I've always been extra cautious and risk averse so I could never get on board with lean-FIRE or some of the numbers people quote here, and I feel sort of validated (I wish I weren't though). It's better to prepare for shit and not need it than the opposite.

Is health insurance going away? Or do you require specific aspects of the ACA to survive? I'm under the impression that, at worst, if the ACA gets defunded or repealed, health insurance will still exist, it will just be slightly different than it is now. Plan prices were going up before ACA, and during the ACA, so even an increase in cost is neither unexpected nor unreasonable.

Prior to the ACA, if you had an individual plan and developed something like cancer, you could be dropped from the plan and then you would never be able to get insurance anywhere else, because no company would want to insure you. That's not a risk I'm wiling to take. Most of what I've read indicates that the Republicans don't want to go back to those days, so I think it should be okay, but we'll have to see.

There are other concerns though even apart from the ACA.....Long term care is a big one. It can cost upwards of $100k/year--we've looked into long term care insurance and they quoted us $15K/year for both of us, and that was with a bunch of restrictions (only covers four years, etc). There have been discussions on this board about it and some say that they'll just kill themselves if that happens to them, but when it comes down to it who know what you will want?

« Last Edit: November 10, 2016, 10:58:17 PM by azure975 »

Metric Mouse

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #148 on: November 10, 2016, 11:09:52 PM »
There are other concerns though even apart from the ACA.....Long term care is a big one. It can cost upwards of $100k/year--we've looked into long term care insurance and they quoted us $15K/year for both of us, and that was with a bunch of restrictions (only covers four years, etc). There have been discussions on this board about it and some say that they'll just kill themselves if that happens to them, but when it comes down to it who know what you will want?

Interesting. Well, Republicans have two years of majority in congress and the presidency. Perhaps they could address this, as Deomcrats did not when in the same position eight years ago.
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azure975

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Re: 2017 ACA plan info now available
« Reply #149 on: November 11, 2016, 06:52:37 PM »
Well, the latest news is the Trump may considering amending the ACA rather than repealing it after talking to Obama. Either way he wants to keep the pre-existing conditions clause and the ability to keep children on until age 26. We will see what actually happens.