February 17, 2013
OBAMACARE UPDATE: Will young adults face ‘rate shock’ because of the health-care law?
Meanwhile, my former colleague Colleen Medill, an ERISA expert, writes:
I don’t know if you will see this in your volume of email, but you might.
I am deeply into studying the impact of Obamacare on employers, and I have been communicating with highly sophisticated ERISA lawyers who are advising employers, from Fortune 50 companies to small firms under 50 employees, on whether to keep or drop or modify their employer group health plans.
It has become very clear to everyone involved who is analytical and not ideological that the rational strategy, for both large and small firms, is to cease providing health care insurance to employees.
No company wants to admit that they are considering eliminating health insurance as an option, or be the first one to drop their health insurance plan, but once a competitor does so, the preference cascade will begin. The clear sentiment is “We will not be the first one to drop our health insurance plan, but we would be a close second.”
The coming preference cascade for employer group health plans is what the Democrats fear the most, because Obamacare was sold to the masses as “if you like your health insurance plan, you can keep it.”
The people who really know the law, and who have been following the avalanche of regulations, have already figured this out. It will take a while for this specialized knowledge to seep downward, because right now only $800+ an hour ERISA attorneys and the most sophisticated HR people understand how Obamacare really works.