Illinois health insurance companies seek to circumvent federal law

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Acts of health insurance providers create drama with state regulators

Drama has erupted in the insurance industry in Illinois. The state’s Department of Insurance has taken issue with an action that many of the state’s largest health insurance providers plan to take in order to avoid federal reforms for an entire year. Per the Affordable Care Act, insurers will not be able to charge higher rates for women, those with pre-existing conditions, and other demographics beginning January 1, 2014. In an attempt to sidestep these new regulations, many of the state’s health insurance companies are shifting their plan years, making policies active just before the federal law is fully implemented.

Department of Insurance confronts insurers

Director of the Illinois Department of Insurance Andrew Boron considers the practice to be reprehensible. Boron notes that the state agency will not approve the plans coming from health insurance companies that are taking advantage of a simple oversight in federal law. The Department of Insurance has informed insurance companies that it will not abide shifting plans and regulators will enforce federal standards despite the efforts of insurers.

health insurance coverageAdvocacy group claims insurers are lobbying Governor Quinn

According to Campaign for Better Health Care, a consumer advocacy group, health insurance companies are not being idle on this issue. The group suggests that many insurers have begun to lobby Governor Pat Quinn in order to provide some leeway on federal regulations. Thus far, Governor Quinn has shown some support for the Affordable Care Act, taking steps to expand the state’s Medicaid service and supporting a state-run health insurance exchange.

Insurers look to mitigate financial impact of federal law

The Affordable Care Act has introduced insurers to new financial strains due to the numerous regulations the law has created. Many insurers have been looking for ways to mitigate the financial impact of the federal law, hence plans to circumvent some of the law’s provisions. Such actions are not isolated to Illinois, of course, as many companies in the health insurance sector are looking to protect themselves from the financial risks associated with the Affordable Care Act.

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