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December 9, 2019

MSCI Signs Letter Opposing Tax On Employer-Sponsored Health Insurance Plans

Last week, the Metals Service Center Institute (MSCI) and more than 1,000 trade associations, labor unions, and businesses sent a letter to members of Congress urging them to repeal the “Cadillac Tax,” a 40 percent tax on some employer-sponsored health care plans that is set to take effect in 2022. As written, the provision would impact employer-sponsored plans that cost more than $11,200 a year for individuals and $30,150 for families. Employers would be taxed on anything above those thresholds.

As The Wall Street Journal explained, approximately one-fifth of all U.S. employers offer at least one health plan whose contributions would exceed the thresholds in the first year of the tax’s implementation. More plans would be impacted in later years. MSCI has opposed the levy since it was passed by Congress as part of the 2009 Affordable Care Act because it will raise costs for the more than 178 million Americans who receive health insurance coverage through their employers.

The letter, available here, says, “While this tax was intended to only hit Americans with ‘gold-plated’ plans, the reality is that very modest plans covering low- and moderate-income working families are projected to trigger the tax simply because they incur greater health expenses.” It goes on to explain that “the tax will disproportionately affect the health plans of women, seniors, rural communities, the sick, and the disabled” and will penalize small businesses “that already struggle to offer health care coverage” for their employees.

Other organizations that signed the letter include the AFL-CIO, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Wholesaler-Distributors, the Business Roundtable, and some major metals companies.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed legislation this past July to repeal the tax. That bill passed by an overwhelming vote of 419 to 6, but legislation is currently awaiting action in the Senate even though it has a clear majority (63) of senators signed on as co-sponsors.