A 54-Year-Old Consulting Engineer’s Obamacare Experience-Truth!
Summary of eRumor:
An unnamed 54-year-old consulting engineer explains says in a Facebook post that he makes $60,000 a year and pays $482 per month for health insurance, and his girlfriend makes $18,000 a year and pays $1 per month.
We can’t confirm whether or not the 54-year-old consulting engineer from the Facebook post is real, but the healthcare scenario outlined in the post is mostly accurate.
The consulting engineer says he lives in Monterrey County, California. Because he makes $60,000 a year, which is equal to 510% of the federal poverty level (FPL), he would not qualify for premium subsidies, according to a Kaiser Family Foundation subsidy calculator tool.
His monthly premium for a high-deductible “bronze” health care plan on Covered California, the state-run health insurance exchange, would cost $491 per month. The cost of the cheapest “silver” plan, meanwhile, would be $704 per month, according to Covered California price quotes.
The consulting engineer also wouldn’t qualify for a second form of government assistance, cost sharing reductions. These are subsidies that reduce co-pays, coinsurance, deductibles and out-of-pocket maximums for those who qualify.
People with a household income of up to 250% of the FPL ($29,425 for a single-person household in 2015) qualify for these cost-sharing reductions, according to Covered California.
Because the engineering consultant is at 510% of the poverty line, he doesn’t qualify.
Meanwhile, the engineering consultant’s 61-year-old girlfriend, who earns $18,000 per year, which is equal to 153% of the poverty level, qualifies for up to $887 a month in premium assistance. That’s about $10,641 per year, according to the same subsidy calculator tool.
With government subsidies, the 61-year-old woman would pay $1 per month for a bronze health insurance plan. Or, she could choose to pay $42 per month for a sliver plan with a lower deductible, according to Covered California price quotes.
So, even though we can’t verify the identity of the engineering consultant in the Facebook post, we can confirm that the health insurance scenario outlined in the post is mostly true. The only difference is that health insurance rates were slightly higher in real life than was quoted in the Facebook post.