Brief How Well-Targeted Are the American Rescue Plan Act's Premium Tax Credits?
Michael Simpson, John Holahan, Matthew Buettgens, Jessica Banthin, Erik Wengle
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In this paper, we analyze whether American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) premium tax credits (PTCs) are well targeted. The ARPA extended PTCs to some people with incomes above 400 percent of the federal poverty level (FPL) by capping premiums at 8.5 percent of income. This has led some to argue that the PTCs are not well targeted to low-income populations. However, we show that most of the PTCs go to people with incomes below 400 percent of FPL, and most of the PTCs’ impact on the number of people uninsured also occurs among people in this income range. Among people with higher incomes (above 400 percent of FPL), those receiving subsidies live in high-premium areas, are older adults who face high premiums, or are members of large families. Thus, we conclude that the ARPA PTCs are indeed well targeted.

Research Areas Health and health care
Tags Health insurance
Policy Centers Health Policy Center
Research Methods Microsimulation modeling