Under the Affordable Care Act, the federal government pays an estimated $346 million per year in insurance premiums on behalf of Connecticut residents — dollars that will be at stake as lawmakers debate repealing the health law. For individual Connecticut customers, that amounts to an average of $357 in premium subsidies per month, according to an analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation.
The health law subsidizes coverage for people earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level by providing tax credits, paid in advance to insurance companies or to individuals when they file their taxes. The tax credits are set so that people don’t pay more than a certain percentage of their income toward the cost of a mid-level insurance plan. The subsidies are only available to people who buy coverage through public exchanges, like Connecticut’s Access Health CT.
For the 80,740 Connecticut customers who receive subsidies, it means $357 per month off the price of insurance. That makes Connecticut sixth-highest among states in average monthly tax credit amount. For insurance companies the tax credit money amounts to $346 million in revenue per year, just from Connecticut, according to the Kaiser estimates.
Nationwide, the foundation estimates 9.4 million people receive a subsidy, at an average of $291 per month per person, which totals $32.8 billion annually.
The 2016 federal poverty level for an individual is $11,880, and 400 percent of that figure, the upper threshold to qualify for the tax credit, is $47,520.