By Robert Freedman, senior editor, REALTOR® magazine
About two weeks ago we ran a quick summary of what to expect now that health reform has passed. To fill in the details of that summary, I sat down with Marcia Salkin, NAR’s managing director for legislative policy, for a video interview.
Among the highlights of what she said:
Employer mandate. Few real estate brokerages will be subject to the requirement that employers either provide health insurance to their employees or pay into the health insurance exchange through which employees get coverage on their own. The lion’s share of brokerages are simply too small to be subject to the requirement.
Individual mandate. Many real estate practitioners will be eligible for tax credits to help offset the cost of coverage. Some practitioners will simply fall below the affordability trigger that will allow an exception to the requirement. Whether you’re exempted or how much in tax credits you get will vary by the cost of insurance in your area, your family size and your income (thecredits are graduated), so some will receive more help than others.
Quick hits. Many of the most prominent provisions, like the creation of the health insurance exchanges, wont take effect for three more years. But there are some provisions taking effect this year that you’ll want to know about. Among them: the small business tax credits (at least a portion of them); a prohibition on denying covaerge to childen for preexisting conditions; and an allowance to keep children up to 26 years of age on your health insurance (even if they don’t live with you or even have their own family).
In the video, Marcia goes into considerable detail on what you can expect. It should answer many of your questions about it.
You can learn even more in a free webinar we’re hosting on Thursday, May 27, at 1 p.m. Eastern Time, called Step-by-Step Walk-through on Health Reform for REALTORS®. Marcia Salkin will be presenting along with Linda Goold, NAR director of tax policy. Register for the webinar now.