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Fine for not having health insurance?

akesoakeso Registered User regular
edited July 2009 in Debate and/or Discourse
I was reading the BBC this morning, and came across an article on the new proposed legislation for a universal health care plan.
There was one part in particular that concerned me:

"Individuals and employers would have new obligations to get coverage, or face hefty penalties "

In the bill, people not buying health insurance would be required to pay a yearly $1000 fine, or half the yearly estimated cost of subsidized health insurance.
The goal of this is clear, and makes sense, to "encourage" younger and healthier individuals to buy health care they do not need to help pay for the system.
Furthermore, they argue that this is constitutional much in the same way that obligatory car insurance is.

But, I was under the impression that driving a car was a licensed act, illegal with out express consent from the government, enabling a different rule-set of regulation, while having a health is... well... not.


My question then becomes, and that I pose to this forum, all ethical questions aside as to whether or not universal health care is needed is another debate, is it in fact even constitutional to fine someone for not having health care?
I thought it was unconstitutional to MANDATE that the people buy goods or services from private or even federal parties.
Anyone able to illuminate further into this subject?

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akeso on
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Posts

  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Personally, I feel it is criminal to force people to purchase health insurance. I'm not sure of the legality of it, but the "it's just like car insurance!" argument seems thin and misleading.

    I haven't seen an actual individual obligation in the bill that's passed yet... though I haven't made it through all 1018 pages.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Australia has something like this but it's not so aggressively punitive as far as I know.

    electricitylikesme on
  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    It would seem trivial to plant it as a tax based fine, that's what MA does for it's version. Our fines are determined at the end of the year when filing state taxes. You get a form from your insurance provider and go "yep, got my form verifying it!", if you don't, you pay more in taxes.

    As for the reasons why:

    Car Insurance is mandated due to the costs you can incur on others, essentially making sure that your actions will pay for the damages regardless of your financial standings. It's not about protecting you, your ass can go bust up your car all you want. It's about hurting me.

    Same basic logic on requiring health insurance if you think about it. Even if you don't have insurance, if you get injured you still go to a hospital, still get treated, and the costs are simply absorbed by the taxpayers. This logic is "hey dumbfuck, get insurance"

    I'd need to check the enforcement side of the national plan. MA's is only verified if you go to the hospital, or a verification that you were insured on Dec 31st of last year (not "has had coverage the entire time", just that one day)

    edit: the goal isn't to get people who never get hurt to buy insurance any more than car insurance laws are to make sure people who never get into accidents pay into the system. It's to cover accidental injury/sickness, and the fact that younger people are more likely to think they're invulnerable and wind up fucked over when they actually get hurt and can't afford the care, imo.

    kildy on
  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I dunno, how do you feel about making it mandatory that parents have health insurance for their children?

    More to the point, the idea of universal healthcare coverage is that everyone pays in and everyone gets coverage. Allowing people to opt out undermines the entire idea and weakens the system. Take, for example, the fact that large employers are required to provide healthcare insurance for people for full-time workers. What then happens is that labor intensive employers "opt out" by hiring more workers and working most of them to just under the minimum time. While it's not totally similar, the gist is that the intentions of the law are undermined by making it possible for the actors (the companies) to avoid meeting the criteria.

    wwtMask on
    When he dies, I hope they write "Worst Affirmative Action Hire, EVER" on his grave. His corpse should be trolled.
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  • akesoakeso Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    kildy wrote: »
    It would seem trivial to plant it as a tax based fine, that's what MA does for it's version. Our fines are determined at the end of the year when filing state taxes. You get a form from your insurance provider and go "yep, got my form verifying it!", if you don't, you pay more in taxes.

    As for the reasons why:

    Car Insurance is mandated due to the costs you can incur on others, essentially making sure that your actions will pay for the damages regardless of your financial standings. It's not about protecting you, your ass can go bust up your car all you want. It's about hurting me.

    Same basic logic on requiring health insurance if you think about it. Even if you don't have insurance, if you get injured you still go to a hospital, still get treated, and the costs are simply absorbed by the taxpayers. This logic is "hey dumbfuck, get insurance"

    I'd need to check the enforcement side of the national plan. MA's is only verified if you go to the hospital, or a verification that you were insured on Dec 31st of last year (not "has had coverage the entire time", just that one day)

    edit: the goal isn't to get people who never get hurt to buy insurance any more than car insurance laws are to make sure people who never get into accidents pay into the system. It's to cover accidental injury/sickness, and the fact that younger people are more likely to think they're invulnerable and wind up fucked over when they actually get hurt and can't afford the care, imo.

    Yeah, but once again, the car analogy doesn't work.
    When you step into a car, you are partaking in a licensed act that is voluntary, you choose to enter the system so you can drive a car.
    Your analogy would be more accurate if the government made it illegal to not have a drivers license tomorrow.
    Your statement on people hurting the system is flat out irrelevant because of this, and what I'm trying to find out.
    Since having health is an obligatory act, and that not paying for it would become criminal, does that count as illegal taxation?

    It doesn't matter if it undermines the system, or if not having insurance hurts the system. The question is, IS IT CONSTITUTIONAL to mandate that someone pays for a good or service, let alone one involving the private sector? It would be like making it mandatory to pay for water usage even if you didn't use any public water.
    You can have the most amazing system ever that makes everyone lives golden and allows us to all fart rainbows. But if it's not constitutional it doesn't matter.
    I really just want to know in fact is it legal to mandate private citizens to purchase a good or service regardless of their use of said good or service.
    The health insurance debate is a larger one for another topic. Simply, are you allowed to make it mandatory to buy a service, and then impose fines for not doing so.

    akeso on
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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    akeso wrote: »
    Yeah, but once again, the car analogy doesn't work.
    When you step into a car, you are partaking in a licensed act that you do not have to do.
    Your statement on people hurting the system is flat out irrelevant because of this, and what I'm trying to find out.
    Since having health is an obligatory act, and that not paying for it would become criminal, does that count as illegal taxation?

    It doesn't matter if it undermines the system, or if not having insurance hurts the system. The question is, IS IT CONSTITUTIONAL to mandate that someone pays for a private good or service? It would be like making it mandatory to pay for water usage even if you didn't use any public water.

    It's a strange situation since you can't opt out of healthcare, ever. Logically, the only other system to go with is fully socialized, and simply add it to your taxes, remove private insurance, and be done with it.

    That said, our tax system makes it mandatory to pay for a lot of things that you personally may never use, it's just that this is being separately itemized. I'm not seeing anything that would make it unconstitutional myself.

    Anywho, the reason you're seeing the issue here is that it's an attempt to make the system functional without making it fully government run. The only way for that to work is mandate that everyone get some form of insurance, be it public or private. Ideally, they'd remove the private option and just roll it into taxes and there would be no insurance plan you picked and payed for, it was just "taxes", but people don't seem to like that.

    Can you think of a single method of doing any national healthcare plan that allows people to opt out? I mean besides "if you don't have insurance, doctors are now required to let you bleed to death on the ER floor"

    kildy on
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    If they want to cover costs they should up the standard levy for it and then offer a discount if you take out private cover.

    electricitylikesme on
  • akesoakeso Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    kildy wrote: »
    akeso wrote: »
    Yeah, but once again, the car analogy doesn't work.
    When you step into a car, you are partaking in a licensed act that you do not have to do.
    Your statement on people hurting the system is flat out irrelevant because of this, and what I'm trying to find out.
    Since having health is an obligatory act, and that not paying for it would become criminal, does that count as illegal taxation?

    It doesn't matter if it undermines the system, or if not having insurance hurts the system. The question is, IS IT CONSTITUTIONAL to mandate that someone pays for a private good or service? It would be like making it mandatory to pay for water usage even if you didn't use any public water.

    It's a strange situation since you can't opt out of healthcare, ever. Logically, the only other system to go with is fully socialized, and simply add it to your taxes, remove private insurance, and be done with it.

    That said, our tax system makes it mandatory to pay for a lot of things that you personally may never use, it's just that this is being separately itemized. I'm not seeing anything that would make it unconstitutional myself.

    Anywho, the reason you're seeing the issue here is that it's an attempt to make the system functional without making it fully government run. The only way for that to work is mandate that everyone get some form of insurance, be it public or private. Ideally, they'd remove the private option and just roll it into taxes and there would be no insurance plan you picked and payed for, it was just "taxes", but people don't seem to like that.

    Can you think of a single method of doing any national healthcare plan that allows people to opt out? I mean besides "if you don't have insurance, doctors are now required to let you bleed to death on the ER floor"

    The issue isn't the ability to opt out. If you were to make an itemized taxation as required in the constitution there would be no question. The issue arises from the fact that your requiring people to opt into a private system, separate from the government.
    I understand the desire for universal health care, and that's not what I'm asking about. It's not about having the ability to opt out, it's not even is it constitutional to have a universal health care system.
    My question is this (still) - IS THIS PROPOSAL CONSTITUTIONAL.

    Your right that I'm seeing a problem with the fact that you're not making it just taxes. But is it actually legal to do it any other way?
    People keep making this car analogy, but that doesn't seem to add up.
    This just seems like a court anulment waiting to happen.

    akeso on
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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I'm not seeing where it's expressly unconstitutional, really. We've established that we can require insurance for things that are marginally opt-in, it seems the same rules would apply to non opt-in services.

    Doing it via pure taxation is easier and cleaner, and less obnoxious. But would absolutely positively never, EVER pass in the current or foreseeable future climates.

    But per my location: I've been living with this system, and it seems perfectly fine and legal here?

    kildy on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Would it constitute a head tax (that is still unconstitutional, right)?

    Car insurance wouldn't apply because you can choose not to have a car.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • AdrienAdrien Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    We already have this in MA (and maybe other places, beats me). It's called mandatory insurance-- the idea is that if you're uninsured, or if an employer doesn't pay a fair share of their employees' insurance, the state assesses a fee which goes into a fund to compensate hospitals for providing free care. It comes along with programs to offer subsidized-to-free insurance for low-income citizens, and it's possible to get a waiver under special circumstances.

    I know Massachusetts is like its own little 21st-century nation stuck in the US*, but it seems to be working pretty well.

    *We also require insurers to allow children to be on their parents' insurance up until 25.

    Adrien on
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  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    akeso wrote: »
    kildy wrote: »
    akeso wrote: »
    Yeah, but once again, the car analogy doesn't work.
    When you step into a car, you are partaking in a licensed act that you do not have to do.
    Your statement on people hurting the system is flat out irrelevant because of this, and what I'm trying to find out.
    Since having health is an obligatory act, and that not paying for it would become criminal, does that count as illegal taxation?

    It doesn't matter if it undermines the system, or if not having insurance hurts the system. The question is, IS IT CONSTITUTIONAL to mandate that someone pays for a private good or service? It would be like making it mandatory to pay for water usage even if you didn't use any public water.

    It's a strange situation since you can't opt out of healthcare, ever. Logically, the only other system to go with is fully socialized, and simply add it to your taxes, remove private insurance, and be done with it.

    That said, our tax system makes it mandatory to pay for a lot of things that you personally may never use, it's just that this is being separately itemized. I'm not seeing anything that would make it unconstitutional myself.

    Anywho, the reason you're seeing the issue here is that it's an attempt to make the system functional without making it fully government run. The only way for that to work is mandate that everyone get some form of insurance, be it public or private. Ideally, they'd remove the private option and just roll it into taxes and there would be no insurance plan you picked and payed for, it was just "taxes", but people don't seem to like that.

    Can you think of a single method of doing any national healthcare plan that allows people to opt out? I mean besides "if you don't have insurance, doctors are now required to let you bleed to death on the ER floor"

    The issue isn't the ability to opt out. If you were to make an itemized taxation as required in the constitution there would be no question. The issue arises from the fact that your requiring people to opt into a private system, separate from the government.
    I understand the desire for universal health care, and that's not what I'm asking about. It's not about having the ability to opt out, it's not even is it constitutional to have a universal health care system.
    My question is this (still) - IS THIS PROPOSAL CONSTITUTIONAL.

    Your right that I'm seeing a problem with the fact that you're not making it just taxes. But is it actually legal to do it any other way?
    People keep making this car analogy, but that doesn't seem to add up.
    This just seems like a court anulment waiting to happen.

    So basically you don't really have a grievance if there's a public option? The question of constitutionality is pretty silly, though. Of course the government can levy a fine on you for failing to follow the law.

    wwtMask on
    When he dies, I hope they write "Worst Affirmative Action Hire, EVER" on his grave. His corpse should be trolled.
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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    Would it constitute a head tax (that is still unconstitutional, right)?

    Car insurance wouldn't apply because you can choose not to have a car.

    Head taxes aren't entirely unconstitutional, actually. I looked.

    "[n]o capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken."

    So there's an unless. And I believe this avoids it entirely by only taxing if you didn't do something, so it's not a direct levied tax on everyone.

    It's kind of a taxation grey area, unless I'm missing some wording somewhere.

    kildy on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    wwtMask wrote: »
    So basically you don't really have a grievance if there's a public option? The question of constitutionality is pretty silly, though. Of course the government can levy a fine on you for failing to follow the law.

    But if the law itself is unconstitutional (which is his question), they can not.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    kildy wrote: »
    Chanus wrote: »
    Would it constitute a head tax (that is still unconstitutional, right)?

    Car insurance wouldn't apply because you can choose not to have a car.

    Head taxes aren't entirely unconstitutional, actually. I looked.

    "[n]o capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid, unless in proportion to the census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken."

    So there's an unless. And I believe this avoids it entirely by only taxing if you didn't do something, so it's not a direct levied tax on everyone.

    It's kind of a taxation grey area, unless I'm missing some wording somewhere.

    Okay, so a head tax essentially amounts to "everybody with a head pays a tax", not "everyone with a head is forced to pay a tax if they don't do X".

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    If you want to keep asking whether it's constitutional or not, we really need to discuss a specific mechanism. A coverage "mandate" can certainly be enacted via strong incentive in a constitutional way.

    Maybe if you threatened people with jail time for not buying private insurance you could find a constitutional argument there, but no one is advocating that.

    edit: wording

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
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  • DmanDman Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    The point of universal health care is to give everyone health care.

    The US could have just increased tax considerably and provided free health care to everyone.

    Instead they are working with the existing structure which means each person buys health coverage. But people are stupid, won't buy health care coverage, and will come desperately crawling for freebees when they suddenly need health care.

    So how do you force each person to buy health coverage? The easiest way is to take it right out of their paycheck via the employer.

    So if you're an employer who does provide a health care plan, this bill doesn't affect you.

    If you're an employer who does not provide health care, you just take it out of the employees wage (small paycut but now you have health care, congratulations!)

    The squeeze is going to be on companies that pay minimum wage and offer no health coverage, because they can't take the money out of their employees paycheck. However, lots of minimum wage workers are students covered under their parents health care plans so presumably the business won't have to worry about covering them....I'd really have to read the fine print to sort this one out. At worst, all the big bad government did here is raise minimum wage by 8%.

    (post dragged over from universal health care thread)

    Dman on
  • WongaWonga Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    As I said in the other forum... a health care system paid by an increase in taxes is not "Free".

    Wonga on
  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    wwtMask wrote: »
    So basically you don't really have a grievance if there's a public option? The question of constitutionality is pretty silly, though. Of course the government can levy a fine on you for failing to follow the law.

    But if the law itself is unconstitutional (which is his question), they can not.

    On what grounds would it be unconstitutional? Was it unconstitutional for penalizing men who failed to register or report for the draft? Or, for that matter, penalizing people who fail to pay their taxes?

    wwtMask on
    When he dies, I hope they write "Worst Affirmative Action Hire, EVER" on his grave. His corpse should be trolled.
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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Wonga wrote: »
    As I said in the other forum... a health care system paid by an increase in taxes is not "Free".

    It's not supposed to be free. It's supposed to be universal.

    I don't think there's a such thing as free health care. It's paid for somewhere.

    kildy on
  • PartialartistPartialartist Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Adrien wrote: »
    We already have this in MA (and maybe other places, beats me). It's called mandatory insurance-- the idea is that if you're uninsured, or if an employer doesn't pay a fair share of their employees' insurance, the state assesses a fee which goes into a fund to compensate hospitals for providing free care. It comes along with programs to offer subsidized-to-free insurance for low-income citizens, and it's possible to get a waiver under special circumstances.

    I know Massachusetts is like its own little 21st-century nation stuck in the US*, but it seems to be working pretty well.

    *We also require insurers to allow children to be on their parents' insurance up until 25.

    I'm in MA and don't have insurance. I cite religious objection, in order to avoid a penalty. The reason I don't have insurance is that my base monthly income (the money I make on the hours I'm permanently scheduled for, not the extra hours I pick up nearly every week) just barely covers my current monthly expenses. If I were to tack on another monthly obligation and, for some reason, there were no hours for me to pick up for a while (happens occasionally), I would have to dip into my very meager savings, which I've only managed to build in the past year or so. It's simply irresponsible for me to get insurance. I'd like to be able to see a doctor, since my last physical was performed by my pediatrician, but I can't without jeopardizing my ability to avoid a penalty I can't afford. Fortunately, I take decent care of myself and haven't been in any catastrophic accidents.

    There are flaws in the MA system. I'm not the only person I know who has had find a way to avoid that penalty. I'm much more in favor of a single payer system.

    Partialartist on
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  • QuidQuid Definitely not a banana Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    So what's the option for people with preexisting conditions?

    Quid on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    wwtMask wrote: »
    Chanus wrote: »
    wwtMask wrote: »
    So basically you don't really have a grievance if there's a public option? The question of constitutionality is pretty silly, though. Of course the government can levy a fine on you for failing to follow the law.

    But if the law itself is unconstitutional (which is his question), they can not.

    On what grounds would it be unconstitutional? Was it unconstitutional for penalizing men who failed to register or report for the draft? Or, for that matter, penalizing people who fail to pay their taxes?

    I'm not saying it is (I have a feeling it is, though I can understand where he's coming from), I'm saying that was his question. The post of yours I quoted didn't indicate to me we were talking about the same aspect of the issue.

    Or rather, it seemed you were assuming the law was constitutional and then applying that to the idea that the tax would also be constitutional... whereas he was asking if the law itself was unconstitutional in the first place.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • SeolSeol Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.

    Seol on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    kildy wrote: »
    Wonga wrote: »
    As I said in the other forum... a health care system paid by an increase in taxes is not "Free".

    It's not supposed to be free. It's supposed to be universal.

    I don't think there's a such thing as free health care. It's paid for somewhere.

    It is, however, often sold as "free" to people who don't understand their taxes and depressed wages would pay for it. It may be a net savings, but they aren't really going to understand that either.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Seol wrote: »
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.

    You must have car insurance if you are financing a car. If you own the car outright, you must either have insurance or pay an "uninsured motorist" fee (at least that's how it goes in Virginia).

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    kildy wrote: »
    Wonga wrote: »
    As I said in the other forum... a health care system paid by an increase in taxes is not "Free".

    It's not supposed to be free. It's supposed to be universal.

    I don't think there's a such thing as free health care. It's paid for somewhere.

    Woo TAANSTAFL. I wish average voters would stop thinking that expanding programs like healthcare will require higher taxes, one way or another. All of the rabid anti-tax rhetoric of the last 30 years has made it politically untenable to promote anything other than fiscal irresponsibility.

    wwtMask on
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  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Seol wrote: »
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.

    Car insurance is compulsory, but the logic is you don't HAVE to own a car. But if you do own a car, you must have insurance.

    Same idea on some forms of insurance if you own a house.

    kildy on
  • SeolSeol Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    Seol wrote: »
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.
    You must have car insurance if you are financing a car. If you own the car outright, you must either have insurance or pay an "uninsured motorist" fee (at least that's how it goes in Virginia).
    That means comprehensive, not third party liability only? Or is all US car insurance comprehensive?

    edit: Because I can definitely see the reasoning behind laws requiring insurance for third party liabilities (which would also extend to include property you don't fully own), but in terms of personal property, I'd expect that to be the decision of the individual. Note: UK perspective at play here.

    Seol on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Seol wrote: »
    Chanus wrote: »
    Seol wrote: »
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.
    You must have car insurance if you are financing a car. If you own the car outright, you must either have insurance or pay an "uninsured motorist" fee (at least that's how it goes in Virginia).
    That means comprehensive, not third party liability only? Or is all US car insurance comprehensive?

    For a financed vehicle it must be comprehensive coverage. If you own it, you may opt for only liability coverage.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • SeolSeol Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    Seol wrote: »
    Chanus wrote: »
    Seol wrote: »
    In the UK, car insurance is compulsory - but only third-party. Is the same true in the US?

    Because it's one thing to not be able to pay your legal liabilities to third parties, and quite another to not protect yourself against individual loss.
    You must have car insurance if you are financing a car. If you own the car outright, you must either have insurance or pay an "uninsured motorist" fee (at least that's how it goes in Virginia).
    That means comprehensive, not third party liability only? Or is all US car insurance comprehensive?
    For a financed vehicle it must be comprehensive coverage. If you own it, you may opt for only liability coverage.
    Right, so then car insurance isn't a valid comparison, because it doesn't mandate you insure your own personal exposure to loss. In the finance situation, you're protecting the financier's collateral, not your own exposure.

    Seol on
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Seol wrote: »
    Right, so then car insurance isn't a valid comparison, because it doesn't mandate you insure your own personal exposure to loss. In the finance situation, you're protecting the financier's collateral, not your own exposure.

    Yes.

    It's a similar comparison to enforced health coverage, but it doesn't necessarily equate that one validates the other.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    wwtMask wrote: »
    Chanus wrote: »
    wwtMask wrote: »
    So basically you don't really have a grievance if there's a public option? The question of constitutionality is pretty silly, though. Of course the government can levy a fine on you for failing to follow the law.

    But if the law itself is unconstitutional (which is his question), they can not.

    On what grounds would it be unconstitutional? Was it unconstitutional for penalizing men who failed to register or report for the draft? Or, for that matter, penalizing people who fail to pay their taxes?

    I'm not saying it is (I have a feeling it is, though I can understand where he's coming from), I'm saying that was his question. The post of yours I quoted didn't indicate to me we were talking about the same aspect of the issue.

    Or rather, it seemed you were assuming the law was constitutional and then applying that to the idea that the tax would also be constitutional... whereas he was asking if the law itself was unconstitutional in the first place.

    Again, why would the law be unconstitutional?

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
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  • Bullfrogof7272Bullfrogof7272 Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    so here's the thing, I'm fucking broke, i have insurance coverage through work but it's expensive and sucks. We could not afford to add my wife to our plan because it was too fucking expensive. We have almost nothing left at the end of each month and have very little in savings as she is a student and works only 2 days a week in shitty retail.

    now, how. the. fuck. Do they expect me to go out and get health insurance that i already cannot afford? Oh i guess i can pay a fucking fine... that i can also not fucking afford. This is retarded and frightening.

    edit: unless a feasible option is offered by the government that i can afford. But mandating something that it has been made clear 46 million goddamn people can already not afford make no sense.

    Bullfrogof7272 on
    the hammer, is my penis.
  • ChanusChanus Harbinger of the Spicy Rooster Apocalypse The Flames of a Thousand Collapsed StarsRegistered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Dyscord wrote: »
    Again, why would the law be unconstitutional?

    If it doesn't constitute a Head Tax, then I don't know... but it wasn't my question to begin with.

    Chanus on
    Allegedly a voice of reason.
  • SeolSeol Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    I thought the whole point of healthcare reform was to relieve the burden of healthcare costs on those least able to afford it?

    Again, UK perspective - I may be being startlingly naive here. ;)

    Seol on
  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    so here's the thing, I'm fucking broke, i have insurance coverage through work but it's expensive and sucks. We could not afford to add my wife to our plan because it was too fucking expensive. We have almost nothing left at the end of each month and have very little in savings as she is a student and works only 2 days a week in shitty retail.

    now, how. the. fuck. Do they expect me to go out and get health insurance that i already cannot afford? Oh i guess i can pay a fucking fine... that i can also not fucking afford. This is retarded and frightening.

    edit: unless a feasible option is offered by the government that i can afford. But mandating something that it has been made clear 46 million goddamn people can already not afford make no sense.

    The entire point is to offer a relatively inexpensive Public Option as well, and fine people who avoid that or private insurance of their own choosing.

    I'm not up on any lower income credits applied to the system at this point, have they changed at all/been removed?

    kildy on
  • kildykildy Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Seol wrote: »
    I thought the whole point of healthcare reform was to relieve the burden of healthcare costs on those least able to afford it?

    Again, UK perspective - I may be being startlingly naive here. ;)

    Both to relieve the burden of healthcare costs, and provide coverage to the effectively uninsurable (not sure if the UK has the same issues we do on that bit)

    It's a long process however, but one of the first key needs is a cheap relatively controlled option that the insurance industry is competing with. Because right now they're all just spiraling their rates out of control in some cold war arms race. Our company had to switch insurance providers this year because it was the third year in a row they'd increased the rates from 25-40%.

    kildy on
  • wwtMaskwwtMask Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Please also note that part of the Democratic plan will provide subsidies to people for whom healthcare would cause an economic burden. I'm not sure about the Republican alternative.

    wwtMask on
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  • Eat it You Nasty Pig.Eat it You Nasty Pig. tell homeland security 'we are the bomb'Registered User regular
    edited July 2009
    Chanus wrote: »
    Dyscord wrote: »
    Again, why would the law be unconstitutional?

    If it doesn't constitute a Head Tax, then I don't know... but it wasn't my question to begin with.

    you wouldn't even have to structure it that way; you could just let people count health insurance spending as a refundable tax credit, or use it as a factor of one.

    Eat it You Nasty Pig. on
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