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Latest ACA “Clarification” Creates More Obstacles for Small Businesses

Friday, December 20, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT:  Kristofer Eisenla, LUNA+EISENLA media
kristofer@lunaeisenlamedia.com | 202-670-5747 (mobile)


National Association for the Self-Employed Reacts to the Latest Health Care Change

WASHINGTON, D.C. – With the Obama Administration’s announcement that a “hardship exemption” will be extended to those consumers whose health care plan was canceled, the National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) – the nation’s leading advocate and resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses -- today released the following statement:

“The myriad of ‘clarifications’ already issued by the Administration places further challenges in educating and informing our members to the continuous last minute changes and tweaks to the ACA that are meant to help them, but ultimately have led to a confused and frustrated consumer base,” said Katie Vlietstra, Vice President for Government Relations and Public Affairs at NASE. “This latest clarification by Secretary Sebelius allowing for individuals who had unplanned health care plan cancellations to apply for a ‘hardship exemption’ and rely on ‘catastrophic’ plans for the upcoming year, continues to erode the President’s promise to keep their existing plans, or access other affordable and comprehensive health care insurance.

We continue to call on the Obama Administration and Members of Congress to take swift action and delay the individual mandate penalty for one-year for everyone while extending open enrollment for all of 2014.”

In response to the outcry over canceled health care plans, the Obama Administration will extend a “hardship exemption” to consumers who believe plans sold through the state and federal exchanges are too expensive.  The new exemption gives consumers the choice of no insurance or of buying subpar catastrophic coverage, including those 30 and older.  

This latest change makes more murky the options available to the self-employed because insurers are left scrambling to produce suitable insurance products.  There is currently no pricing available for ‘catastrophic’ coverage for those 30 and older, which creates an unstable insurance market for all levels of consumers.  The American public continues to be divided by carve outs provided to certain groups of the population in an attempt to address the ongoing challenges faced by the continued disastrous roll out of the Exchange marketplace. The majority of America’s smallest businesses – the self-employed and micro-businesses – will fall into the Individual exchange market for health care coverage.

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The National Association for the Self-Employed (NASE) is the nation's leading resource for the self-employed and micro-businesses, bringing a broad range of benefits to help entrepreneurs succeed and to drive the continued growth of this vital segment of the American economy. The NASE Small Business Locator helps identify and connect our nation’s smallest businesses. The NASE is a 501(c) (6) nonprofit organization and provides big-business advantages to hundreds of thousands of micro-businesses across the United States. For more information, visit the association's website at NASE.org

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