One of the many topics in the 2016 presidential election was the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), sometimes referred to as Obamacare. We’ve written about What Happens if the ACA is Repealed in the past, but it’s a good time to restate the facts.
Before we get into the possible paths forward, it’s important to understand that the Gravie wasn’t built around the ACA. We don’t exist as a result of the ACA. Instead, we fundamentally believe that our model provides “better benefits for all”. More on that below, but if the ACA is repealed or altered, our core business model won’t change. Period.
Based on what we know today, there is a high likelihood that there will be a Repeal and Replace effort by Congressional Republicans. There are two things that are important to keep in mind:
First, all proposals put forth have something in common—they preserve the “guaranteed issue” provision of the ACA. In other words, the new laws do not propose to take us back to the days when insurance companies could deny people or charge them more because of pre-existing conditions. This is important because it ensures that our consumer experience can continue as it is today. We’ll continue to help people make the best health benefits choices for their situation and provide year-round guidance.
Beyond this, the proposals have varying provisions such as exempting all individuals from tax regardless of how they buy their insurance (group or individual), getting rid of the employer mandate (and penalties), allowing private companies to administer tax credits, putting a cap on how much group insurance can be offered tax-free etc. Again, none of these proposed changes are concerns for Gravie or our customers, and some shifts may end up providing more choices to employers and employees.
Second, and more importantly, the reason that Gravie exists is because more and more employers want to take a defined-contribution approach to their employee benefits, providing a wide range of choices, and ensuring that their employees get the best customer service possible. The opportunity for Gravie to provide a better way to employers and their employees did not come about because of the Affordable Care Act. And this opportunity isn’t going to diminish if the Affordable Care Act is repealed and replaced by some other law.
Since Gravie was founded in November 2013, we’ve adapted to changes in both the regulatory environment and our customers’ needs. No matter what happens with the ACA, Gravie remains a constant partner in providing “better benefits for all” and that’s great news for employers, employees and individuals. If you have questions, contact us today.