Meds, Mind, Body & Benefits > Insurance, Benefits Programs & HIV

Some interesting facts on the Health Care Reform

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mpositive:
Effective Jan 1, 2011 for HRAs, HSAs and Health FSAs, over-the-counter drugs will no longer be reimbursed without a prescription.  Non-qualified distributions from HSAs will be taxed at 20% (currently 10%).
Ok, so that means, my FSA account will no longer pay for Aspirin, Tylenol and a host of other items.  What a huge bummer...that will cost me an extra few hundred dollars a year.  And 10% more tax on withdrawals from an HSA.  YAY!  ugh!

Individuals with a pre-existing medical condition who have not had insurance coverage for six months or more may be able to enroll in a new federally subsidized insurance program that is to be established within 90 days of enactment and remain until 2014. Premiums for the pool will be established for a standard population and have a 4:1 age band.  Maximum cost-sharing will be limited to $5,950/individual and $11,900/family in 2010.
Ok, so based on this, it appears that the maximum an individual will pay is $496.00 a month.  If I am reading it correctly..

High income earners ($200,000 individual or $250,000 married filing jointly) will see their Medicare Part A (hospital) tax rate on wages increase to 2.35%, effective in 2013.
Not sure this is very fair....not that I fall under this category anymore anyhow.  But I am not a fan of punishing folks because they make more money, as it is, they pay more tax both in actual dollars and percentage of payroll income.

Effective in 2013, reimbursed medical expenses may only be deducted on tax returns if they exceed 10% of adjusted gross income.  This increase is waived for individuals age 65 and older for tax years 2013 through 2016.
Another bummer....

Effective Jan 1, 2013, FSA contributions will be limited to $2500 annually. 
STOP!!!  That's another $500.00 or so dollars a year to an employee....WOWSA!  Ok, I know there are good things in this bill too, but man, I am getting smacked around here.




Hellraiser:
That 2.35% income tax on people making more than 200,000.00 a year isn't a 2.35% increase it's a .9% increase up from 1.45% (which they already pay).  Honestly if you make 200,000 a year and you're bitching about being taxed less than 1% of your income you should go to another country where making that 200,000 a year isn't even possible.

LordBerners:

--- Quote from: mpositive on March 25, 2010, 12:53:56 PM ---High income earners ($200,000 individual or $250,000 married filing jointly) will see their Medicare Part A (hospital) tax rate on wages increase to 2.35%, effective in 2013.
Not sure this is very fair....not that I fall under this category anymore anyhow.  But I am not a fan of punishing folks because they make more money, as it is, they pay more tax both in actual dollars and percentage of payroll income.


--- End quote ---

Another way of looking at it is this:  income is a privilege, especially very unusual and enormous incomes like $200,000 per annum.  Taxation is best understood as a reduction in privilege - it is the original highly unequal income which is 'unfair'; the taxation makes it more fair.

phildinftlaudy:

--- Quote from: LordBerners on March 25, 2010, 01:19:35 PM ---Another way of looking at it is this:  income is a privilege, especially very unusual and enormous incomes like $200,000 per annum.  Taxation is best understood as a reduction in privilege - it is the original highly unequal income which is 'unfair'; the taxation makes it more fair.

--- End quote ---
and in many cases the tax codes particularly as they pertain to those with an ungodly amount of wealth need to be changed to be more fair -- call me a socialist if that is what seems to fit, but I just don't get how there are those out there with fortunes of $1 billion plus and still getting substantial breaks on their income tax and they are even to collect social security benefits....  I remember a professor telling me that analogy wise most if the income scale was a building it would be the Empire State Building and the majority of people would reside on the first floor -- the wealthiest on the top floor control the majority of the wealth -- that is just too great a disparity and we are seeing the consequences of that disparity now. 

I am always amazed though when people who suffer as a direct result of so many unfair policies that benefit the wealthy stand on the sides of those with the wealth that are benefitting -- all the while they are losing ground -- do they somehow think that if they support those policies that make the rich richer that they will somehow join them someday --- NEWSFLASH:  AIN'T GONNA HAPPEN. 

And the tea parties and ways that many of those against Health Care Reform are acting (i.e. violently) are showing the true colors of many.

Sorry - had to vent....  (Breathe Phil, Breath..... ooohsa, ooohsa) :)

Assurbanipal:

--- Quote from: mpositive on March 25, 2010, 12:53:56 PM ---

Individuals with a pre-existing medical condition who have not had insurance coverage for six months or more may be able to enroll in a new federally subsidized insurance program that is to be established within 90 days of enactment and remain until 2014. Premiums for the pool will be established for a standard population and have a 4:1 age band.  Maximum cost-sharing will be limited to $5,950/individual and $11,900/family in 2010.
Ok, so based on this, it appears that the maximum an individual will pay is $496.00 a month.  If I am reading it correctly..

--- End quote ---

Well... actuallly...$5,950 is the individual out of pocket maximum on co-pays, deductibles, etc.   The premium rate is not yet established.


--- Quote from: mpositive on March 25, 2010, 12:53:56 PM ---High income earners ($200,000 individual or $250,000 married filing jointly) will see their Medicare Part A (hospital) tax rate on wages increase to 2.35%, effective in 2013.
Not sure this is very fair....not that I fall under this category anymore anyhow.  But I am not a fan of punishing folks because they make more money, as it is, they pay more tax both in actual dollars and percentage of payroll income.

--- End quote ---

As Warren Buffett points out, he pays a lower tax rate than his secretary.  That is mainly because he doesn't pay Social Security taxes once he hits the Social Security taxable wage limit although he does pay Medicare taxes on all his wages.   That's a 6.2% tax rate that he (and his employer) do not pay on wages above $106,800.  By paying an additional .9% it means that the tax gap in favor of the wealthy due to Social Security payments goes down to only 5.3%.  

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