A Disability Attorney in Olympia, WA Can Answer Obamacare Questions

by | Mar 2, 2016 | Lawyers

A person receiving disability insurance payments may have ACA questions that a disability attorney in Olympia, WA can answer. The ACA (Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act) has had a substantial impact on the American health insurance sector, affecting people’s access to and payment for coverage. While many can benefit from greater access to insurance, those on disability should carefully consider whether their payments should be counted when determining eligibility for ACA subsidies.

The Effects of the Affordable Care Act

One of Obamacare’s most important features is its requirement that all individuals must have health coverage. Commonly called an “individual mandate,” the requirement means that those without group coverage can buy insurance through the exchange. Anyone with an income less than 400% of the poverty level can get a subsidy to decrease their insurance expenses.

Does the ACA Count Disability Benefits as Income?

If one receives disability payments, they may be required to include them as income when determining eligibility for subsidies under the ACA. A person’s eligibility for subsidized insurance or Medicaid is determined using the household’s MAGI or modified adjusted gross income.

     *     For those receiving SSDI, the benefits are included in the MAGI. Though the benefits are non-taxable, they are counted as income when determining eligibility for subsidies. For most, this doesn’t matter. However, if one isn’t currently insured, the payments are calculated as income under the ACA.

     *     Those on private disability coverage do not count benefits as income because premiums are paid with post-tax money. The benefits are not included in the MAGI when determining ACA subsidy eligibility.

     *     If one gets benefits from an employer’s policy, they are typically considered income. If both the worker and the employer paid premiums, only the part paid by the employer counts as income.

Other ACA Effects

The ACA carries several effects for those with disabilities. For instance, insurers cannot exclude or deny coverage to anyone with pre-existing conditions. Moreover, the Act keeps insurers from imposing lifetime or annual caps on coverage. The disabled who have Medicaid now have greater access to community and home-based health services.

The ACA is a complex law and regulations are changing every day. Disabled individuals should consider calling Putnam Lieb Potvin Attorneys at Law to learn how the Act can affect them. A Disability Attorney in Olympia, WA can provide a free consultation and specific advice.