Author Topic: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?  (Read 26215 times)

unplugged

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Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« on: March 01, 2013, 06:08:49 AM »
If a person is ERE, and hey have kids, do they qualify for government benefits? I read it's based on income and dividends alone can look like a low income to someone not familiar with ERE etc..? Would an ERE family qualify for medicaid health, WIC, Food stamps, earned income credit, free lunch, and things of this nature?

bo_knows

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #1 on: March 01, 2013, 07:28:42 AM »
I believe they do technically qualify.  There is a fellow on the early-retirement.org forums talking about his plan to retire at 35 with 2 kids, doing just that (food stamps, free lunches, etc) because the amount that they actually live on is below whatever threshold.  I think he's looking at a $1.2M portfolio.

Though, to eventually get SS when you're of "full retirement age", you need to have logged earned income in 40 "quarters" of various years.

unplugged

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #2 on: March 01, 2013, 07:31:53 AM »
Could someone in theory early retire this way? By meeting the eligibility requirements via ERE?

Here is a sample of what I mean.
http://www.thegatewaypundit.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/income-analysis.jpg

This chart would be an example of someone giving up a 60K job to a low paying job but ending up with the same results on the end. The article I saw this on mentioned that the low income job actually gave more spending money than the 60k job did.



« Last Edit: March 01, 2013, 07:34:44 AM by unplugged »

unplugged

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #3 on: March 01, 2013, 07:37:28 AM »
I believe they do technically qualify.  There is a fellow on the early-retirement.org forums talking about his plan to retire at 35 with 2 kids, doing just that (food stamps, free lunches, etc) because the amount that they actually live on is below whatever threshold.  I think he's looking at a $1.2M portfolio.

Though, to eventually get SS when you're of "full retirement age", you need to have logged earned income in 40 "quarters" of various years.

From adding these 2 posts together, knowing we have the 40 quarters, I guess my husband could quit his job today, work fast food , and we would have no lifestyle change.

NumberCruncher

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #4 on: March 01, 2013, 07:40:34 AM »
Maybe technically...but that's ethically icky feeling. Why take handouts when you don't need them?

Christiana

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #5 on: March 01, 2013, 08:06:53 AM »
Some benefits (at least in my state) have asset limits as well as income limits.  Also, the process of applying for and maintaining all those benefits can be almost a job in itself.

StetsTerhune

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #6 on: March 01, 2013, 08:11:12 AM »
Could someone in theory early retire this way? By meeting the eligibility requirements via ERE?

Of course you 'can.' That's like asking if someone could retire early by sleeping in homeless shelters.

To quote Office Space: "You don't need a million dollars to do nothing, man. Take a look at my cousin: he's broke, don't do shit."

Spork

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #7 on: March 01, 2013, 08:42:06 AM »
Maybe technically...but that's ethically icky feeling. Why take handouts when you don't need them?

This.

To apply mustachianism to government: Don't buy things you don't need.  This would include forcibly taking money from working non-retired people and give it to ERE folks that just chose not to work.

I'm not a big fan of handouts in general, but I do understand the arguments behind them.  I don't think this meets any of the arguments behind them.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2013, 09:15:02 AM by Spork »

tooqk4u22

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #8 on: March 01, 2013, 09:02:45 AM »
Maybe technically...but that's ethically icky feeling. Why take handouts when you don't need them?

This.

To apply mustachianism to government: Don't buy things you don't need.  This would include forcibly take money from working non-retired people and give it to ERE folks that just chose not to work.

I'm not a big fan of handouts in general, but I do understand the arguments behind them.  I don't think this meets any of the arguments behind them.

I find the question of the OP extremely offensive, unethical and IMO should be criminal. Social safety nets, which IMO are too expansive and too long, do provide a valuable contribution to support those experiencing very difficult times for any number of reasons - ERE is not one of them.  If this is the OPs intended strategy then I hope it fails miserably. 


KimAB

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #9 on: March 01, 2013, 09:30:33 AM »
  There is a fellow on the early-retirement.org forums talking about his plan to retire at 35 with 2 kids, doing just that (food stamps, free lunches, etc) because the amount that they actually live on is below whatever threshold.  I think he's looking at a $1.2M portfolio.

I think that is obnoxious!   It truly disgusts me that someone in their 30's would retire, life off interest and social programs. 

GuitarStv

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #10 on: March 01, 2013, 09:33:50 AM »
I am a big fan of government handouts.  I'm a big supporter of redistribution of wealth.  I'm happy to know that my taxes go in part to help those in dire circumstances.  In my opinion, helping others who need food, education, and a place to live is a not just altruistic . . . but also helps to reduce crime rates and generally makes the world better for ME to live in too.  It gives people a chance at a better life and an opportunity to turn around and benefit society.  I don't think that the safety nets we have are expansive enough frankly.

That said, what you're suggesting is playing the social net for personal gain and is pretty clearly unethical.  It flies in the face of what those programs are for, and shouldn't be tolerated as acceptable behaviour.

TheDude

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2013, 09:34:13 AM »
I think this is an interesting discussion. Earlier I asked a question in the forum about minimizing taxes (http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/forum/ask-a-mustachian/hypothetical-tax-situation/msg3939/#msg3939). This would include receiving a credit so actually paying negative income tax. The consonances  seems to be that minimizing taxes would be the best thing to do.

Is it different getting a tax credit via income tax vs using the social safety net programs (i.e. welfare. food stamps, wic CHP+ etc) Also how does one draw the line when it comes to medicare and SS?

I don't think its as black and white as this thread is making it out to be. Personally the only thing I would take advantage of is CHP+ because its incredible insurance. 

etselec

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2013, 09:59:54 AM »
I will echo TheDude's question - I am curious why people feel that benefits administered through the tax code are different than ones that are not.

For what it's worth, I think that what the OP is asking about is unethical, but that it should be entirely legal. Means-testing laws that count savings penalize people who are trying to get out of poverty. Could you imagine not being allowed to build up an emergency fund or save to replace a car with cash? That is crazy and it's bad policy.

So if an extremely small number of people (and make no mistake - it's an infinitesimal fraction of people on these programs, many of which have asset-testing in the first place) want to do what the OP is suggesting, then fine. Stopping them isn't worth the cost of the damage it would do to the people who really need the program.

jenstill

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2013, 10:20:49 AM »
In states/programs that don't do asset tests, certainly you could. I know this because in my situation -- single, working mother of 4 -- people are CONSTANTLY telling me I should quit my job and either not work at all or work part-time for minimum wage so that we can live better than we do now. I should clarify: I don't mean random people who don't know what they're talking about. I mean the people that are administering these programs; I deal with them often trying to get assistance for residents at my various properties (for my job, not my personally-owned rental properties). And out of curiosity, I actually did the math. It's true; I could quit my job -- not get fired; quit -- and live a life equal to the one we are living now for housing and food and BETTER than what we have now for insurance coverage, heating our home, after-school care and programs for kids, upcoming college costs and/or continuing education for myself if I wanted it, reduced or eliminated student loan payments, and numerous other programs such as weatherization services, financial planning and savings-match programs, and so on. The reduced stress for me of constantly juggling income and expenses would be a big impact too.

I won't quit my job, though. And if I happen to get fired for any reason, I'll get another job. For all of the reasons posted above about why this is unethical and also because I want my children to learn and see that doing the right thing isn't always the easiest thing, and that we are responsible for ourselves. Learning all that I have from MMM and from you all in the forums is helping to make doing the right thing easier and I'm teaching my kids these things too.

unplugged

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2013, 10:22:45 AM »
I am not asking for myself. If you have read anything I have posted my leanings are quite clear LOL. 

I just put some pieces of a puzzle together from an article here yesterday of a family living off 14K.  Then I know a family here that seem to be doing some things that don't add up.  Their particular line of work and huge family size, low income, but so many perks, free college for whole clan, always puzzled me.

How often do the rich take advantage of govt programs I wonder? I am seeing that the guidelines vary by state. A northeastern millionaire couple are qualifying for tons of stuff because they retired really early. They are living off savings so technically have no "income" until they reach retirement age.

The guy doing all this at the ER site is an atty. Makes you wonder what he saw in his work to make him take this direction. He does not respond to criticism and ignore the post that question the ethics of this.

Sounds to me like we have some loop holes to close.

tkaraszewski

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #15 on: March 01, 2013, 10:31:51 AM »
Maybe technically...but that's ethically icky feeling. Why take handouts when you don't need them?

Eh, I've been legally forced to spend tens of thousands of dollars on useless stealth planes and drones to blow up Iraqis for my entire working career. Why should I feel bad about taking advantage of that system? This isn't something I'm actually doing or planning on doing, but considering how the government wastes my tax money I would hardly feel guilty about getting some of it back.

mpbaker22

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #16 on: March 01, 2013, 10:36:30 AM »
Maybe technically...but that's ethically icky feeling. Why take handouts when you don't need them?

One could say the same about the government.  If they've been collecting my taxes, don't I have a right to collect it back?

I initially had the same though, but when you think about it, what is unethical about doing to the government what it does to us?  Taxes are not only my largest expense, but they are more than 50% of all my expenses!

unplugged

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #17 on: March 01, 2013, 10:43:22 AM »
I am not asking for myself. If you have read anything I have posted my leanings are quite clear LOL. 

I just put some pieces of a puzzle together from an article here yesterday of a family living off 14K.  Then I know a family here that seem to be doing some things that don't add up.  Their particular line of work and huge family size, low income, but so many perks, free college for whole clan, always puzzled me.

How often do the rich take advantage of govt programs I wonder? I am seeing that the guidelines vary by state. A northeastern millionaire couple are qualifying for tons of stuff because they retired really early. They are living off savings so technically have no "income" until they reach retirement age.

The guy doing all this at the ER site is an atty. Makes you wonder what he saw in his work to make him take this direction. He does not respond to criticism and ignore the post that question the ethics of this.

Sounds to me like we have some loop holes to close.

Again, I am asking because I am annoyed not that I would participate. My husband and I have felt like the "workers"  at 60-70 hours a week. Then we see non workers have a better lifestyle than us. We sometimes feel like we pay certain people's bills. I REALLY get annoyed when people on the dole criticize us for the long hours my spouse works.  It's just sort of funny to think what would happen if all the workers decided to play the game too. Who would pay all the bills then?

tooqk4u22

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #18 on: March 01, 2013, 10:46:46 AM »
Eh, I've been legally forced to spend tens of thousands of dollars on useless stealth planes and drones to blow up Iraqis for my entire working career. Why should I feel bad about taking advantage of that system? This isn't something I'm actually doing or planning on doing, but considering how the government wastes my tax money I would hardly feel guilty about getting some of it back.


One could say the same about the government.  If they've been collecting my taxes, don't I have a right to collect it back?

I initially had the same though, but when you think about it, what is unethical about doing to the government what it does to us?  Taxes are not only my largest expense, but they are more than 50% of all my expenses!

My views on government are clear in many posts - too big and too much spending in a very inefficient and unproductive way and it needs to be trimmed across the board. 

But the two quotes above do make a valid point - if you can't beat em then join em, although that is exactly what the gov't wants - greater dependency so if too many do it we fail together.



DoubleDown

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #19 on: March 01, 2013, 11:18:05 AM »

I won't quit my job, though. And if I happen to get fired for any reason, I'll get another job.

Kudos to you jenstill, too bad everyone won't act honorably like this! And I wouldn't be surprised if you are in the minority since such a strong incentive is being given in cases like yours not to work for a living -- hell you're even being blatantly encouraged by the people that administer these programs to use them and stop working!

It's inevitable that when government offers tax deductions, credits, and assistance programs that people are going to take advantage of them. Too bad the wrong incentive is offered so often.

Interesting (and unfortunate) that in some places an ERE person could qualify for assistance programs. Similar to a news story about a year ago where a multi-million dollar lottery winner was continuing to collect food stamps each month. At least the legislature in that state (Michigan??) closed the loophole as a result of the publicized story.

In some ways I guess you could say any of us retiring "early" will benefit by paying far less in income taxes, but I certainly have no ethical qualms about that. And I guess if we earned so little (doubtful) that we automatically qualified for some kind of earned income credit I would take it! I've certainly done more than my fair share paying in over the years. I never feel bad about taking advantage of any tax deductions/credits that are offered, as much of an overall poor public policy I might think it is. Why the government feels the need to give incentives to certain behaviors through tax policy (mortgage interest deductions, etc.), creating a 50-billion page tax code in the process, is beyond me, besides the obvious lobbying/influence industry. But if deductions/credits are available, I'm using them.

mpbaker22

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #20 on: March 01, 2013, 11:23:46 AM »
My views on government are clear in many posts - too big and too much spending in a very inefficient and unproductive way and it needs to be trimmed across the board. 

But the two quotes above do make a valid point - if you can't beat em then join em, although that is exactly what the gov't wants - greater dependency so if too many do it we fail together.
And I share your view on government which is precisely why I think it's not unethical.  Normally unethical behavior is not justified as a response to other unethical behavior.  However, this would only be unethical in that it's a sort of 'stealing' from the government, but the government is 'stealing' from me (or that's how i view it).  So, what's unethical about 'stealing' what's rightfully mine?  It's an interesting question that maybe needs some more thought to form a better argument.

Spork

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #21 on: March 01, 2013, 12:30:19 PM »
My views on government are clear in many posts - too big and too much spending in a very inefficient and unproductive way and it needs to be trimmed across the board. 

But the two quotes above do make a valid point - if you can't beat em then join em, although that is exactly what the gov't wants - greater dependency so if too many do it we fail together.
And I share your view on government which is precisely why I think it's not unethical.  Normally unethical behavior is not justified as a response to other unethical behavior.  However, this would only be unethical in that it's a sort of 'stealing' from the government, but the government is 'stealing' from me (or that's how i view it).  So, what's unethical about 'stealing' what's rightfully mine?  It's an interesting question that maybe needs some more thought to form a better argument.

While I share the same basic opinion ... I come to a different conclusion.  If instead of thinking of "the government stealing from you and you stealing back"... think of it as
a) the government steals from you and gives to person X
b) the government steals from person Y and gives to you.

It's not quite stealing back.  It's more "stealing again."  I think of this as lose-lose.

dragoncar

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #22 on: March 01, 2013, 12:49:54 PM »
I wouldn't count on it -- you never know when a program will be cut or an asset test added.

Jamesqf

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #23 on: March 01, 2013, 12:51:31 PM »
One could say the same about the government.  If they've been collecting my taxes, don't I have a right to collect it back?

Depends on whether what you're getting back is more than what you're putting in, doesn't it?

If you want to be even halfway honest, you might want to subtract the value of those government programs that you a) actually use; or b) support.  So I personally would have no problem getting back what the government spends on e.g. anti-drug programs, but would gladly contribute a few bucks extra for the things I do support.

Tyler

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #24 on: March 01, 2013, 01:08:28 PM »
Interesting conversation.

Does everyone here have the same ethical problem with taking advantage of legal government financial assistance when it applies to healthcare premiums when the ACA is rolled out?

matchewed

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #25 on: March 01, 2013, 01:23:01 PM »
My take on it is all about intention. The intent of food stamp programs is aid for those who can't provide for themselves; if you are FIRE this does not apply to you IMO. Something such as ACA has the intention of maximizing the number of people with health insurance; I think you can look into reasonable options within the law in that case.

Of course his heavily depends on your personal code of ethics.

anastrophe

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #26 on: March 01, 2013, 01:36:36 PM »
I wouldn't count on it -- you never know when a program will be cut or an asset test added.

This.

In my state, SNAP has an asset test that limits you to something like $2K in assets, excluding retirement accounts and houses, but including all savings and taxable accounts. And a lot of these programs are state-specific, so whether it would be technically possible would probably depend on what your assets are and where you are---not a yes/no answer.

dragoncar

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #27 on: March 01, 2013, 03:15:22 PM »
I wouldn't count on it -- you never know when a program will be cut or an asset test added.

This.

In my state, SNAP has an asset test that limits you to something like $2K in assets, excluding retirement accounts and houses, but including all savings and taxable accounts. And a lot of these programs are state-specific, so whether it would be technically possible would probably depend on what your assets are and where you are---not a yes/no answer.

Interestingly, I recently discovered that a lot of states have abolished or increased the asset limits, even though the official websites still quote the $2k number.  It's disappointing that the official sites can't convey accurate info.

http://scorecard.assetsandopportunity.org/2013/measure/lifting-asset-limits-in-public-benefit-programs

mpbaker22

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #28 on: March 01, 2013, 05:55:12 PM »
One could say the same about the government.  If they've been collecting my taxes, don't I have a right to collect it back?

Depends on whether what you're getting back is more than what you're putting in, doesn't it?

If you want to be even halfway honest, you might want to subtract the value of those government programs that you a) actually use; or b) support.  So I personally would have no problem getting back what the government spends on e.g. anti-drug programs, but would gladly contribute a few bucks extra for the things I do support.

I would actually support the anti-drug programs, if they were run efficiently and effectively.
It's other things, like WIC, SNAP, etc. that I don't support. (There are many others, these are just examples.)

Nudelkopf

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #29 on: March 01, 2013, 06:13:15 PM »
Sure, if I retire early and am a "low-income earner", then the government will pay for my kids to go to uni (that's how it is now anywyay). No guilt about it. I'd be in that situation now with my parents being retired.. but they earn only $4k too much per yr. Meanwhile everyone is incredulous that I *don't*get centre link. Government allowances for uni students is pretty much the norm amongst my peers. (I'm too young to qualify on my own).

NICE!

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #30 on: March 01, 2013, 06:23:35 PM »
Don't steal, the government hates competition.

destron

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #31 on: March 01, 2013, 07:08:31 PM »
I will echo TheDude's question - I am curious why people feel that benefits administered through the tax code are different than ones that are not.

If we are talking about a negative income tax, I think it is equally unethical.

For what it's worth, I think that what the OP is asking about is unethical, but that it should be entirely legal. Means-testing laws that count savings penalize people who are trying to get out of poverty. Could you imagine not being allowed to build up an emergency fund or save to replace a car with cash? That is crazy and it's bad policy.

It doesn't have to be a dichotomy. In other words, you don't have to be destitute to receive assistance with means testing.

kelly1mm

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #32 on: March 02, 2013, 03:28:39 AM »
Interesting conversation.

Does everyone here have the same ethical problem with taking advantage of legal government financial assistance when it applies to healthcare premiums when the ACA is rolled out?

I certainly am planning on taking the max financial assistance under ACA.  It is, in effect, cutting 4-6 years off my retirement date by doing so.  In fact, it was the ACA bieng found constitutional that led me first to ERE then here.  Not a super high earner to begin with and not as young as some of you (mid 40's) but will be retired in less than 10 years from 'seeing the light'.  ACA is a BIG part of why that can happen.

Spork

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #33 on: March 02, 2013, 06:58:25 AM »
Interesting conversation.

Does everyone here have the same ethical problem with taking advantage of legal government financial assistance when it applies to healthcare premiums when the ACA is rolled out?

I certainly am planning on taking the max financial assistance under ACA.  It is, in effect, cutting 4-6 years off my retirement date by doing so.  In fact, it was the ACA bieng found constitutional that led me first to ERE then here.  Not a super high earner to begin with and not as young as some of you (mid 40's) but will be retired in less than 10 years from 'seeing the light'.  ACA is a BIG part of why that can happen.

Just curious: what have you computed your health insurance cost to be with/without ACA?

spoonman

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #34 on: March 02, 2013, 10:30:44 AM »
I'm glad to see this thread taking shape, lots of interesting practical and ethical concerns being discussed.

Right now I am notionally planning to keep using a High Deductible Health Plan with a HSA that I'm plowing money into right now.  It's still unclear (to me at least) what will happen to HDHP once the ACA goes into full effect in 2014.

The HDHP was going to be my way of not being dependent in any way on the government, but I'm not sure if it will remain a viable option after 2014.

One thing I know for sure though: there's no way in hell I will ever be collecting food stamps or some of the other government assistance in FI.  I think those programs are meant for those in genuine need.  I say that from experience: my family (my dad, my brother, and I) had a genuine need back in the mid 90's.  I don't even want to know what our fate would've been had food stamps not been available too us.  A year or so later we managed without assistance and have never looked back since.

Blindsquirrel

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #35 on: March 02, 2013, 11:22:30 AM »
   Well, I say go for it. Would rather see my tax dollars go to a wise moustachian than just about any other thing the US gov flushes money on. Between my wife and I we paid various taxing authorities an absolute great big Efffen stack of cash and we got jack squat for it.

grantmeaname

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #36 on: March 02, 2013, 01:09:20 PM »
   Well, I say go for it. Would rather see my tax dollars go to a wise moustachian than just about any other thing the US gov flushes money on. Between my wife and I we paid various taxing authorities an absolute great big Efffen stack of cash and we got jack squat for it.
Wise Mustachians value independence and self-sufficiency.

Blindsquirrel

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #37 on: March 02, 2013, 02:01:51 PM »
   Very true, they also value efficiency. What is more efficient that getting paid or fed for for no work involved? Pays pretty well per hour of work I think. The efficiency approaches infinity once the forms are filled out. My only point was well, governments swiped a ton of loot from me, would rather see it go to a fellow traveler.

kelly1mm

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #38 on: March 02, 2013, 11:40:16 PM »
Interesting conversation.

Does everyone here have the same ethical problem with taking advantage of legal government financial assistance when it applies to healthcare premiums when the ACA is rolled out?

I certainly am planning on taking the max financial assistance under ACA.  It is, in effect, cutting 4-6 years off my retirement date by doing so.  In fact, it was the ACA bieng found constitutional that led me first to ERE then here.  Not a super high earner to begin with and not as young as some of you (mid 40's) but will be retired in less than 10 years from 'seeing the light'.  ACA is a BIG part of why that can happen.

Just curious: what have you computed your health insurance cost to be with/without ACA?

Just using the amount now provided by the insurance we now have (BC/BS) we pay $900 per year for family plan.  The school board pays the other $15,600.  So, I figured that we would need about that per year between retirement and medicaid, then a lessor, but still significant amount.  Our non-health care retirement budget is a bit under $20k per year (already down to 26k per year with working costs included) so about 22k with ACA subsidy vs. 35k with paying full freight ourselves.  Basically, the ACA takes 13k worth of annual expenses away equating to $325,000 less I have to have in the stash before retirement.  That is about 7 years worth of our curent savings rate.

That being said, I have learned that there are other ways to get health insurance (HSA w/ HDHP) that could lower the cost.  It was the realizaton that the cost of insurance could be lower once ACA kicks in that got me moving toward MMM so I am happy for that. 
« Last Edit: March 02, 2013, 11:48:17 PM by kelly1mm »

SwordGuy

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #39 on: March 03, 2013, 08:54:48 AM »
   Very true, they also value efficiency. What is more efficient that getting paid or fed for for no work involved? Pays pretty well per hour of work I think. The efficiency approaches infinity once the forms are filled out. My only point was well, governments swiped a ton of loot from me, would rather see it go to a fellow traveler.

The problem with nice rationales for stealing is that they are just rationales and it's still stealing.

WFUDEAC

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #40 on: March 03, 2013, 09:09:40 AM »
creating a 50-billion page tax code in the process, is beyond me,


What a gross exaggeration! While I completely agree that the U.S Tax Code is overly complicated it isn't even over 100,000 pages.

Daley

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #41 on: March 03, 2013, 09:12:43 AM »
Very true, they also value efficiency. What is more efficient that getting paid or fed for for no work involved? Pays pretty well per hour of work I think. The efficiency approaches infinity once the forms are filled out. My only point was well, governments swiped a ton of loot from me, would rather see it go to a fellow traveler.

The problem with nice rationales for stealing is that they are just rationales and it's still stealing.

QFT. Two wrongs never make a right, as this is nothing more than vengeance logic. If everyone embraces this sort of literal lex talionis, everyone would be blind and toothless. The world needs more forgiveness and mercy, even of the wrong-headed and greedy. The thing is, the people get the government they deserve. Just because you feel your government is greedy and corrupt doesn't give you license to be just as greedy and corrupt back. You don't like getting ripped off with your taxes? Support and represent behaviors that don't continue to feed that behavior of corruption, greed and entitlement.

Blindsquirrel

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #42 on: March 03, 2013, 09:24:54 AM »
   I do apologize a bit for the trollesque comments, I have just spent about a zillion hrs doing our taxes and it  made me  churlish.  Taxes are our largest expense by a factor of 2.5 over all other spending combined. Not only do they steal so much, they make it painful and I wiz away many hours that I could be doing something I enjoy.

SwordGuy

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2013, 09:41:55 AM »
Very true, they also value efficiency. What is more efficient that getting paid or fed for for no work involved? Pays pretty well per hour of work I think. The efficiency approaches infinity once the forms are filled out. My only point was well, governments swiped a ton of loot from me, would rather see it go to a fellow traveler.

The problem with nice rationales for stealing is that they are just rationales and it's still stealing.

QFT. Two wrongs never make a right, as this is nothing more than vengeance logic. If everyone embraces this sort of literal lex talionis, everyone would be blind and toothless. The world needs more forgiveness and mercy, even of the wrong-headed and greedy. The thing is, the people get the government they deserve. Just because you feel your government is greedy and corrupt doesn't give you license to be just as greedy and corrupt back. You don't like getting ripped off with your taxes? Support and represent behaviors that don't continue to feed that behavior of corruption, greed and entitlement.

Well said.

Blindsquirrel

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #44 on: March 03, 2013, 10:38:02 AM »
The problem with nice rationales for stealing is that they are just rationales and it's still stealing.

 I would not call all those who receive government benefits that they qualify for as thieves.

grantmeaname

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #45 on: March 03, 2013, 10:54:27 AM »
No, certianly not all of them. But I would definitely call some of those who receive government benefits they qualify for thieves. One example of this group is people who are independently worth upwards of half a million dollars and choose not to support some of their needs and instead overload programs that already have trouble with their funding.

Jamesqf

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #46 on: March 03, 2013, 10:57:42 AM »
The thing is, the people get the government they deserve.

False.  The problem is that I (and other Mustachians & the rest of the sensible minorities) are getting the government that the foolish majority deserves.

Tyler

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #47 on: March 03, 2013, 11:14:50 AM »
No, certianly not all of them. But I would definitely call some of those who receive government benefits they qualify for thieves. One example of this group is people who are independently worth upwards of half a million dollars and choose not to support some of their needs and instead overload programs that already have trouble with their funding.

How do you feel about social security?  Should people who diligently saved over the years forego their rightful SS payments so that those who saved nothing can have a more secure money source?  And if so, does that not incentivize wasteful spending?

grantmeaname

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #48 on: March 03, 2013, 11:21:48 AM »
You mean how do I feel about receiving SS benefits? Social security isn't means tested, which suggests to me that it's not expected that you forego it in order to support yourself. Hopefully you can see that that's a pretty colossal difference between social security and SNAP or WIC.

Of course, as someone who is going to retire with way less than 30 years of earnings, I don't expect to receive much in the way of social security anyway.

Daley

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Re: Do ERE's qualify for government benefits?
« Reply #49 on: March 03, 2013, 11:36:38 AM »
The thing is, the people get the government they deserve.

False.  The problem is that I (and other Mustachians & the rest of the sensible minorities) are getting the government that the foolish majority deserves.

Then do more to combat that issue. Educate the foolish and actively do something positive about it either for the sake of yourself, or better still your fellow man. Silent complacency is just as much a contributer to the corruption as is active participation in same said corruption. At least then, you can stand up and denounce that corruption with integrity instead of hypocrisy.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2013, 11:38:43 AM by I.P. Daley »