More Health-Care Insurers Seek Big Premium Increases

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from The Wall Street Journal,

The Obama administration published more information about hefty 2016 proposals.

The Obama administration published more information Monday about hefty premium increases for 2016 sought by large insurers selling plans under the health law.

Major carriers from around the country are proposing big increases in the premium rates paid by consumers who buy insurance policies on their own.

Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois is looking to raise rates by averages of 29% or more. In Pennsylvania, Highmark Health Insurance Co. is asking for 30%, according to proposals submitted by insurers for the year ahead. Around the country, some of the main market leaders are looking for double digit increases.

The new requests for premiums come at a time when the political and legal future of the law hangs in the balance. The Supreme Court is set to issue a decision later this month on the validity of the law’s tax credits to offset the cost of premiums for lower-income consumers in most states in the country.

Republicans opposed to the health law still plan to make it part of their 2016 election campaign, and for the law’s Democratic supporters, the proposed rate increases mean a tough conversation about how the law is working.

Some of the significant increases being sought were first reported in The Wall Street Journal.

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