If disability insurers and disability insurance advisors can’t stop a big media freight train, maybe they can siphon some energy off of it.
The train hurtling towards us now is coverage of taxpayers stampeding into tax preparers’ offices in a frantic effort to resolve problems with the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) advance premium tax credit (APTC).
See also: What H&R Block says about PPACA
Conscientious people who like to dot every “i” and cross every “t”, and who certainly would pay the required payroll taxes for their household help, if ever they could afford household help, will face a terrifying bureaucratic maze.
The relaxed, devil-may-care types will just smile, scribble “What?” on their tax forms and sail through tax season with help from some kind of last-minute Internal Revenue Service (IRS) emergency relief that will cause viral social media photos of taxpayers setting up tents in the tax preparers’ offices to vanish.
The backers of MyFreeTaxes.com, a free, Web-based tax filing help service for site for people with annual household income of $60,000 or less, are trying to drum up attention for that service. One major backer is United Way. Two other major backers are organizations that count many people with household income under $60,000 among their shoppers: Walmart and Goodwill Industries.
A fourth backer is that National Disability Institute, a group that lobbies for programs that help people with disabilities make and save money, and for programs that help families provide for family members with disabilities.
Of course, many people with serious disabilities already have PPACA public exchange plan coverage or PPACA-compliant off-exchange individual coverage. Those people may face extra mazes of unexpected conflicts between the requirements of the APTC program, public disability program eligibility requirements, private disability insurance benefits eligibility requirements, and other programs and requirements that suddenly turn out to have unexpected conflicts with PPACA.
For disability insurance community professionals, simply helping people and families affected by the intersection of disability with PPACA find tax advisors who understand both PPACA and the financial implications of disability might be a way to win consumers’ gratitude.
For the professionals trying to sell new individual coverage, the current tax season might be a good reason to tell prospects why they need an income protection checkup.
PPACA might decrease the amounts people who become disabled need to pay for coverage premiums out-of-pocket but sharply increase the amounts some of those people pay out of pocket for deductibles and coinsurance amounts.
Disability professionals could ask prospects whether they want to experience the same kinds of PPACA-related surprises if they ever have to file disability claims that they will be experiencing over the next few weeks as they file their tax returns.