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Thread: Obamacare ... the legal stuff

  1. #11
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    http://townhall.com/columnists/elile...tm_campaign=nl
    $3 fee for Obamacare program cost this business $100 to file the form! This was because the form is so complex they had to pay their accountant to review it.

    This so-called “Patient-Centered Outcomes Trust Fund Fee” is imposed on health insurance plans and employer-funded Health Reimbursement Arrangements.
    This employer is offering something extra to their employees, and they pay a tax to do so, it would appear.
    If the Patient-Centered Outcomes Trust Fund is to exist at all, taxes on health insurers and big health plans might well be a good way to fund it. But a form that costs $100 to fill out so that the government can collect $3 in revenue is simply pointless by any standard. Furthermore, since few people seem to know about the rule (final guidance just came out) one imagines a great many small businesses are probably going to be in breach come July 31st.
    There’s both a Regulatory Flexibility Act and a Small Business Administration Office of Advocacyspecifically intended to prevent the government from imposing requirements this stupid. Right now, they seem to be asleep at the switch.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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  2. #12
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Probably could see this coming ...
    Should the authors of Obamacare foreseen this situation? Even if they did, there is precious little they could do about it. Detroit's bankruptcy has spooked many cities and states, exposing their vulnerability to the skyrocketing costs of health care for retired public workers. There isn't much that cities can do to change pension plans unilaterally. They need to go back to the negotiating table where unions across the country are digging in to protect benefits.

    But health care is a different story and it appears that dozens of big cities will take advantage of federal subsidies for insurance to throw their retirees on to the state exchanges - to be paid for by the rest of us.

    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/...#ixzz2aUtWhhSn
    Everybody gets short-changed on this one ... the public employees who thought they had a great retirement health plan won't have it; and the cost of adding many more unanticipated individuals to the state exchanges could impact the cost of the subsidized premiums for everyone.

    It could turn out that if those public employees still get a large part of their pensions, plus are still able to get other jobs, their income level may be too high to qualify them for subsidy. Only time will tell.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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  3. #13
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    NY Times reports today that Detroit is, indeed, expecting that the Obamacare health exchanges could pare $5.7 BILLION from their unfunded retiree health care costs.

    I recall seeing that there was $9.X billion in unfunded retiree costs, but not sure if that was both pension & health care costs, or just pension.

    Looks like Congress won't get a chance to vote on whether to bail out some of these bankrupt cities ... O'care has already mandated that it will be done. Does that fall under the heading of taxation without representation?

    Evidently, Chicago's credit has recently been downgraded as well. Will Chicago be next?
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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  4. #14
    Senior Member luvmylabs23139's Avatar
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    OH, the taxpayers are screwed!
    Hihope Hiland Heathen of Perth CD, RE, CGC, TDI

  5. #15
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    Congress and its staff get a "waiver" from Obamacare
    The Office of Personnel Management, under heavy pressure from Capitol Hill, will issue a ruling that says the government can continue to make a contribution to the [COLOR=#11B000 !important]health care[/COLOR] premiums of members of Congress and their aides, according to several Hill sources.
    A White House official confirmed the deal and said the proposed regulations will be issued next week.
    Just Wednesday, POLITICO reported that President Barack Obama told Democratic senators that he was personally involved in finding a solution.
    The problem was rooted in the original text of the [COLOR=#11B000 !important]Affordable Care Act[/COLOR]. Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) inserted a provision which said members of Congress and their aides must be covered by plans "created" by the law or "offered through an exchange." Until now, OPM had not said if the Federal Employee Health Benefits Program could contribute premium payments toward plans on the exchange. If payments stopped, lawmakers and aides would have faced thousands of dollars in additional premium payments each year. Under the old system, the government contributed nearly 75 percent of premium payments.
    Obama's involvement in solving this impasse was unusual, to say the least. But it came after serious griping from both sides of the aisle about the potential of a "brain drain." The fear, as told by sources in both parties, was that aides would head for more lucrative jobs, spooked by the potential for spiking health premiums.
    There was a certain sense of urgency, too, since enrollment in the exchanges was set to begin Oct. 1. There were discussions of a legislative fix - attaching language to a must-pass bill to fix the problem. But that would've been too difficult in today's paralyzed Washington.
    White House officials acknowledged that a fix was needed. But they knew that once they dealt with it through a regulation, some Republicans would use it against them - even though most of their party was privately obsessing over it.
    So members of congress and their staffs will be able to purchase the most expensive policy available on the exchange and you and I will pick up most of the tab.
    Premium increases that are going to slam millions of American families won't be felt on Capitol Hill because, at bottom, they believe they are better than the rest of us. They are more valuable to society than you. They deserve special privileges because their work is so important while the work you do is meaningless.


    Read more: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/...#ixzz2asaJeOLR
    Most of these guys earn more than the average American, and O-care is too much of a hardship for them? And too much of a hardship for the union workers at the IRS?
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
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  6. #16
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    For those who may be interested
    http://www.dontfundobamacare.com/
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
    "Know in your heart that all things are possible. We couldn't conceive of a miracle if none ever happened." -Libby Fudim

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  7. #17
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.c...act_id=2106789
    I don't know if this download is free or not, since I didn't actually do the download.

    However, this is a point about Obamacare that I heard mentioned long ago, but nobody has focused on it since.
    Taxation Without Representation: The Illegal IRS Rule to Expand Tax Credits Under the PPACA


    Jonathan H. Adler


    Case Western Reserve University School of Law; PERC - Property and Environment Research Center

    Michael F. Cannon


    Cato Institute

    July 16, 2012

    Health Matrix: Journal of Law-Medicine, Forthcoming
    Case Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-27

    Abstract:
    The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) provides tax credits and subsidies for the purchase of qualifying health insurance plans on state-run insurance exchanges. Contrary to expectations, many states are refusing or otherwise failing to create such exchanges. An Internal Revenue Service (IRS) rule purports to extend these tax credits and subsidies to the purchase of health insurance in federal exchanges created in states without exchanges of their own. This rule lacks statutory authority. The text, structure, and history of the Act show that tax credits and subsidies are not available in federally run exchanges. The IRS rule is contrary to congressional intent and cannot be justified on other legal grounds. Because the granting of tax credits can trigger the imposition of fines on millions of individuals and employers, the IRS rule is likely to be challenged in court.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
    "Know in your heart that all things are possible. We couldn't conceive of a miracle if none ever happened." -Libby Fudim

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  8. #18
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    There was a lawsuit filed in OK and yesterday the Fed District judge allowed it to proceed over the objections of the Dept of Justice. I think it covers the issue.
    *********
    http://www.newson6.com/story/2311837...ealth-care-law

    http://tinyurl.com/kwp6mxv

    OKLAHOMA CITY -

    A federal judge has denied part of the federal government's motion to dismiss Oklahoma's lawsuit challenging the new federal health care law.

    U.S. District Judge Ronald White handed down the ruling Monday in Muskogee. The ruling grants parts of the government's request to dismiss the case but denies other parts.

    White rejected the government's argument that Oklahoma lacked standing to challenge the law. The decision means that parts of the lawsuit, filed by Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt in 2011, will continue to be litigated.

    Pruitt challenged implementation of the law after the Internal Revenue Service finalized a rule to allow the government to punish "large employers," including state governments, with millions of dollars in penalties in states without state health care exchanges. Pruitt says that is not permitted.
    Eric

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  9. #19
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    To sign people up with Obamacare, the govt has hired "navigators". (this article is by Gov. Jindal)
    http://www.foxnews.com/opinion/2013/...-for-disaster/

    Over the next few weeks, the Obama administration is set to dole out grants and begin to hire thousands of marketers to help sell ObamaCare. The Obama administration came up with a clever name for these marketers – ‘navigators’ – who are charged with helping to sign people up for ObamaCare.
    The article cites grants of $54 million.
    The ‘navigators’ are prohibited from having financial ties to an insurance company, but other than that there are few constraints. Union organizers and community activists are among the types that are allowed to be hired as ‘navigators’, and having prior experience working in the health care field doesn’t seem to necessarily be a pre-requisite for the job. I wonder what percentage of these ‘navigators’ will be partisan Democrats?


    The ‘navigators’ will be required to take only 20 hours of online course training, which will apparently make them experts on the 1,000 page ObamaCare bill. An HHS official was even quoted this week saying, “We view training as an ongoing process.” Count me as skeptical.
    To make matters worse, these ‘navigators’ are going to have access to all kinds of personal information that will make the whole program ripe for fraud.
    I have read elsewhere that these navigators will also be encouraged to have these "clients" register to vote. They will have the forms to register these individuals on the spot. Will Democrats care if they sign up for O-care if they can at least get them to register Democrat?
    Coupled with the delay of the employer mandate, there is little way to know if a person has access to affordable insurance through their employer, making them ineligible for subsidies. This makes the system open for fraud and abuse. ObamaCare is now on the honor system.


    Beyond the serious implications for taxpayers that thousands could be signing up to receive taxpayer subsidies who are not eligible, this is problematic for consumers who could be forced to pay back money if they mistakenly sign up for ObamaCare, along with the potential for fines.
    You could not make this stuff up. No one would believe it. I’m not sure I believe it.


    In Louisiana, I signed a law to ensure that felons and ex-cons are not the ones who will be in charge of the ‘navigator’ program and have access to all this sensitive personal data. This is a step in the right direction and some other states have passed similar legislation, but running the ‘navigator’ program without a proven means to verify if a person is eligible for ObamaCare has the potential for disaster.




    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
    "Know in your heart that all things are possible. We couldn't conceive of a miracle if none ever happened." -Libby Fudim

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  10. #20
    Senior Member Gerry Clinchy's Avatar
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    http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2013...atest-setback/
    It just keeps getting worse.

    We learn now (though it was done some months ago), that there will be a delay in the capping of out-of-pocket health expenses. It will be delayed until 2015 (similar to the delay of the employer mandate).

    The New York Times first reported on Tuesday that the administration is giving some insurers and employers a one-year grace period to adhere to the limit, which otherwise would have capped individual costs at $6,350 a year. The full requirement will go into effect in 2015, rather than 2014. The change means some employers -- namely, those with more than one benefit provider -- could use plans with higher limits or no limit at all on out-of-pocket costs during that period.


    The grace period apparently was granted earlier this year, though was buried in reams of regulatory material and was not publicly reported until now. Department of Labor guidelines published in February had addressed the delay.
    This would mean that individuals get a double whammy ... high premium costs + possibly higher out-of-pocket (that would have been capped with O-care)

    However,
    In response to the report, an Obama administration official stressed that the cap on individual spending for "major medical coverage" will still be in place in 2014, "on time." It will then be expanded to cover other benefits the following year.

    Insurance companies could still raise premiums to offset some of the lost revenue from caps on out-of-pocket costs. The law, though, does aim to keep premium increases in check, and barring any other delays would still prevent health insurers from denying coverage or charging more based on pre-existing conditions.
    Rand Paul expresses a valid concern, and more people should be paying attention to that:

    ,,, brought a defiant challenge Tuesday from a top Senate Republican, accusing the president of "illegal and unconstitutional" acts in changing laws without congressional approval.


    "The president doesn't get to write legislation, and it's illegal and unconstitutional for him to try and change legislation by himself," Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., told Fox News.
    Not to mention that these changes have cost consequences, and only Congress gets to decide on funding. The POTUS has been allowed to do this with immigration law, and now with his own signature law. Perhaps Lee is right. It's time to stop funding since the law being funded is no longer the one Congress passed.
    G.Clinchy@gmail.com
    "Know in your heart that all things are possible. We couldn't conceive of a miracle if none ever happened." -Libby Fudim

    ​I don't use the PM feature, so just email me direct at the address shown above.

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