The Affordable Care Act Rebate Checks Are in the Mail: Now What?

August 7, 2012 | By
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Some small businesses were among the most strident opponents of the Affordable Care Act, but by Wednesday, many of these businesses will have received checks totaling $321 million from their health insurance providers, courtesy of the health care overhaul that became law in 2010. The checks are rebates from insurers that did not spend at least 80 percent of the premiums they collected from small group plans on either actual health care expenses or improving the quality of health care, a provision known as the medical loss ratio rule.

Small businesses in 38 states, the District of Columbia and three United States territories are receiving checks on behalf of their employees, according to the Department of Health and Human Services. (In the remaining 12 states and in the Northern Mariana Islands, insurance companies in the small group market spent at least 80 percent of collected premiums on health care-related expenses.) The typical subscriber, which could be either an individual or a family, will receive a $174 rebate. Average rebates are highest in Georgia, at $811 per subscriber, and lowest in Utah, at $7 per subscriber.

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