What happens to Floridians who would have qualified for Medicaid expansion?

May 2, 2013 

RIP Medicaid at a glance

The Legislature's inaction on a plan to expand health insurance coverage to poor Floridians means many people will remain without health care. But it does not mean they face fines under the individual mandate as part of President Barack Obama's health care law. Here's what happens:

• Uninsured people earning less than $10,000 as an individual or $20,000 as a family in 2013 are exempt from paying a fine.

• Uninsured people who would have to pay more than 8 percent of their income to purchase health insurance also are exempt from a fine.

• A group of uninsured Floridians -- close to 300,000 -- are eligible for Medicaid under its current terms but not yet enrolled in the program. They can enroll. If they chose not to, they likely would not be subject to fines because of their income level.

• Another group of about 175,000 Floridians now pay for their own health care but would have been eligible for the expanded Medicaid system or an alternative. They could continue to purchase their own health care.

• Beginning in 2014, people who earn more than 100 percent but less than 400 percent of the federal poverty level will be able to use tax credits to purchase coverage in new health insurance exchanges.

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