What the Supreme Court ruling means to you
By VICTORIA JONES
Talk Radio News Service
WASHINGTON – Around 250 million people already meet the rules, according to the Congressional Budget Office. If you have insurance through your employer, or a government program, that counts. You don’t have to go out and buy it. That leaves between 4 and 7 million people who will have to go out and buy insurance without one of the subsidies built into the law.
You don’t have to buy it if you can’t afford it – there are subsidies for low and middle class people in the new state exchanges. It’s on a sliding scale, with help available for families earning up to 400% of the federal poverty level (around $92,000 for family of four).
You can be exempt on hardship grounds: so poor you don’t file taxes, if you have health care through a job but would have to spend more than 8% of family income to take it up. If you’re under 26 you can stay on your parents’ plans. If you’re under 30 you can buy a lower cost “catastrophic plan” through state exchanges, which means you’d be covered if you were hit by a bus.
You will be able to keep your own insurance, but if you work for a small business you might have to get a different health plan in the next few years (you might have had to anyway). The benefits might be better under the new rules, and it may or may not cost more.
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