The House Ways and Means Committee today fine-tuned a proposal that could affect how the government implements the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) health insurance purchase tax subsidy provision.
The committee went over, or “marked up,” the proposal during a look at Ways and Means budget reconciliation recommendations.
The Supreme Court is considering the constitutionality of PPACA, lower courts are hearing more attacks on the constitutionality of the act, and Republicans in Congress are pushing for repeal.
If the act survives, takes effect on schedule and works as drafters expect, it will create a new system of refundable income tax credits that individuals will be able to use to buy health insurance. PPACA also calls for the creation of temporary health insurance tax breaks for small employers.
Only individuals with incomes under 400% of the federal poverty level would qualify for the tax credit, and the government would provide the credit while the tax year was still under way, to help people pay for health coverage.
Republicans and Democrats have noted that managers of the tax credit program could end up giving some taxpayers bigger health insurance purchase tax credit subsidies than they were supposed to get.
The tax credit overpayment proposal calls for the government to credit recipients to repay all excess subsidies; current law would limit the amount of excess tax credits that moderate-income taxpayers would have to pay back.