Treasury to propose new rule to fix Obamacare 'family glitch'

“As a result, 200,000 uninsured people are expected to gain coverage."

April 05, 2022, 5:11 AM

President Joe Biden on Tuesday will announce new steps his administration is taking to build on the Affordable Care Act, including a new executive order and a proposed rule from the Treasury Department to fix the ACA's so-called "family glitch."

"Under Treasury's new proposed rule, family members who have to pay more than 10% of income for coverage can be able to receive financial help under the ACA," a senior administration official said on a call with reporters Monday night. "As a result, 200,000 uninsured people are expected to gain coverage and nearly a million more are expected to see lower premiums every day."

The Kaiser Family Foundation estimates that more than 5.1 million people fall in the ACA family glitch, but senior administration officials said they don't believe everyone will choose to leave their current coverage plans, which is why they gave the above estimate of 200,000 newly insured and roughly 1 million switching plans.

The rule would begin to take effect beginning Jan. 1, 2023, if enacted, and Americans will be able to sign up to get financial assistance during the next open enrollment period.

PHOTO: U.S. President Joe Biden speaks to guests after delivering remarks on administration efforts to strengthen national supply chains and increase the number of truck drivers, at the White House in Washington, U.S., April 4, 2022.
U.S. President Joe Biden speaks to guests after delivering remarks on administration efforts to strengthen national supply chains and increase the number of truck drivers, at the White House in Washington, U.S., April 4, 2022.
Leah Millis/Reuters

Paraphrasing Biden's memorable "this is a big f***** deal" quote on the day then-President Barack Obama signed the ACA, senior administration officials said, "to borrow a phrase, this rule is a - is a big deal."

"We think it's the most significant administrative action to improve implementation of the ACA that we've taken since the law was first implemented."

The executive order Biden will sign will highlight ways to make it easier for people to enroll in and keep their coverage, helping people better understand their coverage options, strengthen and improve benefits, and improve access to health care providers. It will also take steps to reduce medical debt, officials said.

Biden will highlight these steps during a Tuesday afternoon event in the Rose Garden alongside Obama.

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