What Does ACA Repeal Collapse Mean for Agents?
All of the effects of the failure to repeal or replace the Affordable Care
Act (ACA) cannot be determined now, because much of what happens next is up in
the air. At the risk of taking one tweet out of context, after the vote President
Trump tweeted, "As I said from the beginning, let ObamaCare implode, then deal.
Watch!" While Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said after the vote, "It's
time to move on," President Trump has indicated he would like to see another
vote on ACA repeal shortly. While the House has adjourned for its August recess,
McConnell still plans to keep the Senate in session another two weeks.
The impact of all of this on agents will depend a lot on what happens now
to the health insurance market. Will Congress come together and take steps to
stabilize markets? Or will repeal advocates attempt to destabilize them? Will
President Trump order payments, known as cost-sharing subsidies, to insurers
cut off on the exchanges when they become due each month? (The next payment
is due in mid-August).
With a mid-August deadline to finalize 2018 health insurance rates looming, the
NAIC said Congress must act quickly before its recess to stabilize the individual
health insurance market.
READ: Insurers Await Trump Decision on Health Cost Subsidies
PIA Members' Involvement in Health Insurance
According to the 2017 PIA Independent Agent Survey, in health insurance
78.84% of PIA members participate in private market placement while 16.2% have
to engage in the ACA marketplace for their customers. With respect to health
insurance, 68.1% of PIA agencies reported a loss of more than 10% of earnings
in this line over the last three years, with an increase in required service.
These figures indicate that the overwhelming majority of PIA members participate
in private market health insurance placement, with very limited use of the ACA,
mostly as a courtesy to their clients.
NAIC Urges Renewal of NFIP
The National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) issued a letter to
Senate Banking Committee and House Finance Committee leadership urging lawmakers
to reauthorize the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP) before its expiration.
"The NAIC stands ready to work with Congress to support a long-term reauthorization,"
said NAIC CEO Mike Consedine.
READ: PIA Supports NFIP Reauthorization
The NAIC also issued support for the Flood Insurance Market Parity and
Modernization Act (S. 563), which would allow states to remove private flood
insurance restrictions, helping insurers to provide coverage that would serve as
a market alternative to the NFIP. The bill would allow states to remove private
flood insurance restrictions, helping insurers to provide coverage that would
serve as a market alternative to the NFIP.