Health insurance subsidies hit a roadblock in the US

health insurance deadline enrollment

Some people may be receiving more subsidies than they are due

U.S. consumers may be receiving more subsidies from the federal government than they are due to receive under the Affordable Care Act. The federal law offers financial assistance to those that fall within a certain range of poverty, as defined by the government. Subsidies are meant to offset the cost of health insurance policies, making them more affordable and more widely available to consumers throughout the country. Some people may be abusing the availability of these subsidies, however.

Some 1 million people could be issued subsidies that they do not actually need

An estimated 1 million people throughout the country may be receiving subsidies that are not due to them. These people may have provided financial information that significantly differed from what was reported to the Internal Revenue Service. When applying for coverage through state-based insurance exchange, these consumers were asked to provide information concerning their income. Unfortunately, the information provided did not always match the information that the IRS had on hand. As such, these people may end up having to repay their subsidies.

Those defrauding insurance exchanges could be fined for $250,000

health insurance enrollmentLast week, the Obama administration declared that those lying to federal insurance exchanges would face civil fines of up to $250,000.  Those willingly and knowingly attempting to defraud insurance exchanges would also have their policies canceled. The health insurance companies providing these policies would receive funding from the federal government in order to cover the losses they may see from what is tantamount to insurance fraud.

The issue may not be malicious in nature due to the technical problems of insurance exchanges

While this may be a problematic issue, the fact that so many people provided inaccurate information concerning their finances may not actually be malicious in nature. Insurance exchanges have been plagued with a wide variety of technical problems that have made it difficult, if not impossible, for many people to enroll for the coverage they need. These technical problems did not only affect the enrollment process, of course, and could have affected the data that consumers provided when signing up with their state’s insurance exchange.

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