Delaying the Individual Mandate Could have Major Consequences for the Health Law

Delaying the Individual Mandate Could have Major Consequences for the Health Law

September 23, 2013

A recent House of Representatives bill would, among other changes, delay the implementation of the ACA's individual mandate for one year. Such a delay is not a modest change to the health care reform law, but would have substantial implications for the feasibility of effectively implementing the law in the coming years. Delay would reduce insurance coverage, increase average premiums in the nongroup and possibly the small group insurance markets, and increase the government cost per newly insured person. Plus, the change would invalidate insurer premium rates already approved for 2014, creating disruption and uncertainty for insurers, consumers, and government.

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