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Health Care and Insurance News Bulletin 

February 2 – February 13, 2015

The purpose of this bulletin is to compile a handful of articles relating to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) that are most pertinent to LIUNA and its health and welfare funds. We hope you find this biweekly bulletin helpful and informative.

How the “Cadillac Tax” Could Drive Obamacare Over a Political Cliff
In its economic forecast last week, the Congressional Budget Office revealed a quandary about Obamacare’s “Cadillac tax”: To make the underlying law fiscally sustainable, the tax may end up increasing at a rate that becomes politically unsustainable.

Tax Credits Cut Average ACA Premiums to $105
Less than a week before Obamacare enrollment closes February 15, federal regulators said Monday that the average monthly premium after tax credits ranges from $47 in Mississippi to $172 in New Jersey.

IRS: No Penalties for Late Repayments of The Premium Tax Credit
When your advance credit exceeds your actual credit, you have to repay the excess credit to the IRS on your 2014 tax return, where it is treated as an additional tax liability.

ACA Complicates Tax Season as People Who Do Not Have Coverage Will Face a Penalty
By April 15, every tax filer in the U.S. will have to verify that he or she had health coverage in 2014, claim an exemption for not having it, or pay a penalty.

Emergency Room Use Still High Under Health Reform
One of the biggest targets of health reform was the uninsured "super-user" who sought out care for everything and anything under the bright lights of America's chaotic emergency rooms.

High Deductibles Keep Patients Away From Care
"I was making an economic decision about medicine based on absolutely no medical qualification," Frances Fisher said.

With the Obamacare Enrollment Window Closing, HealthCare.gov Activity Picks Up
Nearly 7.75 million people have so far signed up for 2015 health plans through the 37 states using HealthCare.gov, as activity on the Web site picks up just days before the end of the Affordable Care Act's second-ever enrollment period, Obama administration officials reported on February 11.

STATES IN THE NEWS

California Extends Obamacare Enrollment Deadline to February 20 for Many
California gave many consumers until February 20 to enroll in Obamacare coverage in anticipation of long lines this weekend.

Colorado’s Uninsured Face Stiffer Penalties in 2015; Deadline Nears
As 2015 open enrollment ends on February 15, Coloradans without health insurance will face significantly higher penalties this year than they did last year.