Washington, DC (PRWEB) May 09, 2013
M&L Special Needs Planning, a company located in Washington, D.C., is offering a discussion of the various changes that will occur as a result of Obamacare in 2013 via their company blog. This discussion includes tax changes, program creation and enhancements, and changes to health insurance coverage, focusing particularly on how these changes will affect individuals with special needs.
The majority of the Obamacare changes in 2013 are tax related. To begin with, high wage earners (those who earn more than $200,000 a year or $250,000 for couples) will now face a 0.9% tax hike. There is a new medical device tax; artificial joints, bed pans, and defibrillators, as well as many other medical devices, are now subject to a 2.3% tax. Changes have also been made to the ways in which Americans calculate medical deductions. Previous to this year, Americans could claim a deduction if total medical expenses added up to more than 7.5% of their earnings; as of 2013, that amount has risen to 10%.
Of all the tax related changes that came into effect on January 1st, the one that is perhaps of the most interest to the special needs community is the $2500 per year Flexible Spending Account (FSA) cap. In this account, an employee can deposit pretax dollars that are intended to pay for qualified medical expenses not covered by health insurance. Previous to this cap, the amount of money that could be deposited by an employee to his or her FSA was up to the discretion of the employer. While critics say that this is detrimental to the special needs community, supporters say that the decision was based on the national average amount of the FSA and claim that increased insurance coverage will eliminate the need for a higher FSA cap amount.
In addition to these tax regulation changes, a number of new programs are being implemented under Obamacare in 2013. The Payment Bundling program proposes that an episode of care is billed as a whole, rather than paying for each service separately. It is intended to streamline the process of receiving medical care by facilitating a higher level of cooperation between medical professionals, while increasing the quality of care and lowering costs. Another program intended to promote preventative services, is also in effect. State Medicaid programs offering preventative services, such as cancer screenings, counseling for weight loss, addiction, and smoking cessation, routine vaccinations, and testing for diabetes, high blood pressure, and other preventative services for free, or at little cost to the patient, will now receive money from the federal government. Also, as of 2013 the Children’s Health Insurance Program, (CHIP), has been extended for another two years. The program is a collaboration between state and federal government that ensures that “children in families with incomes too high to qualify for Medicaid, but cannot afford private healthcare insurance, have healthcare coverage.” Funding has been extended until 2015.
M&L Special Needs Planning. LLC works to help families understand how policies such as the Obamacare 2013 affect them and their family member(s) with disabilities. Through the website, the blog, the workshops, and other services these certified financial planners strive to educate families and help them better plan their financial future. Those wishing to learn more on this topic and others can visit the M&L Special Needs Planning. LLC website and are encouraged to contact them for more information.
Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2013/5/prweb10716592.htm.
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