What if the tax breaks for employer-sponsored health benefits were to change? How would American workers feel about that?
As it turns out, 39 percent of those asked say they wouldn’t change a thing, according to the 2013 Health and Voluntary Workplace Benefits Survey, a public opinion poll conducted by the Employment EBRI and Greenwald and Associates.
Of course, that means plenty of others would make some changes.
Indeed, 34 percent said they would want to switch to a less costly plan provided by their employer, 22 percent say they would want to shop for coverage directly from insurers, and 5 percent say they would drop coverage altogether.
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In other words, there’d be plenty of disruption in the workplace and the market.
According to EBRI research, the tax preference associated with employment-based health coverage is the largest “tax expenditure” in the U.S. budget, accounting for $1.1 trillion in foregone tax revenue between 2012-2016.
Workers who obtain health coverage through an employer pay no taxes on the employer’s portion of the premium.
Libertarian think tanks such as the Cato Institute advocate elimination of the tax breaks on employer-provided health benefits.