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WIPP Statement on King v. Burwell Supreme Court Decision on ACA Subsidies

Thursday, June 25, 2015  
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WIPP Statement on King v. Burwell Supreme Court Decision on ACA Subsidies


Washington, D.C. (June 25, 2015) — Women business owners can breathe a sigh of relief that the Supreme Court case, allowing subsidies in federally operated healthcare exchanges, is settled.  WIPP fought for many years to bring to the health insurance market the ability to pool resources to have better access to health insurance for small businesses and their employees. Loss of subsidies for individuals would have, by many estimates, doomed these important mechanisms of insurance coverage. The Kaiser Family Foundation, a non-partisan recognized research foundation, calculated subsidized enrollees would face an average effective premium increase of 287 percent if the court ruled against the administration.

Under current law, companies with employees under 50 employees do not have to offer health insurance, so many small companies encourage their employees to shop for their own healthcare in the individual market exchanges.  Had the Supreme Court ruled against the constitutionality of subsidies in the 34 federally-run exchanges, many small employers would have faced the same dilemma before Obamacare was enacted—no place for their employees to shop.  It was estimated that without the subsidies, many Americans could not afford health insurance.  Therefore, the additional burden of operating the exchanges would have fallen on the 4.6 million Americans who use the federally-run exchanges.  

Regardless of the political disagreements on whether the reforms enacted by Obamacare are working or if the law in its entirety should be repealed, WIPP believes that a decision of this magnitude would have had a serious effect on small businesses and, in turn, impact our economy as a whole.  

We urge the Congress to take a practical approach to making changes to the law, such as the ability to use Health Reimbursement Accounts or defining full time workers as 40 hours instead of the current 30-hour definition.  WIPP continues to believe that health insurance coverage and the costs associated with it are a key component of employee recruitment, retention and their well-being as well as the health of the small businesses that employ millions of Americans.

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