For those of you who still feel that Health Reimbursement Accounts is a great way to encourage small businesses to pay for your health insurance then it is time to contact your Representative about supporting H.R.5860 – Small Business Healthcare Relief Act of 2014. Congressman Charles W. Boustany, Jr., M.D., (R-LA) and Congressman Mike Thompson (D-CA) have introduced a new bill to restore health reimbursement accounts for small businesses. Here is my summary of the bill:
Amounts paid by an eligible small employer on behalf of an employee of the employer for premiums for a qualified health plan shall be treated as employer-provided coverage for medical expenses under an accident or health plan and shall not be considered a group health plan for purposes of section 9815.
The bill sounds like it will restore HRAs for small businesses by exempting small business HRAs from the group plan rules. Applying group plan rules to HRAs was one of those Affordable Care Act idiosyncrasies that drives me nuts. Why do our Affordable Care Act bureaucrats keep making decisions that makes health care less affordable? Whose side are they on? The only question I have is whether my grandfathered health insurance plan is a qualified health plan under this law. Since my grandfathered health insurance plan costs 52% of the lowest cost bronze plan and has a much smaller deductible, this is a big deal.
Here is the link to the blog post at Zane Benefits.
Here is the link to the press release from U.S. Rep. Mike Thompson’s web site.
Here is the link to the bill’s text at congress.gov.