Legislative Update For Week Ending September 4 2015
Low-income beneficiaries who receive Medicaid in addition to Medicare. State Medicaid programs pay the Part B premiums for people who qualify due to low income and resources. According to the Kaiser Family Foundation, there are approximately 10 million dually - eligible beneficiaries representing about two-thirds of those who are not protected by hold harmless. .TSCL would like to thank the following for taking time out of their busy schedules to discuss issues of critical importance to seniors: Congressman David Valadao (CA-21), Congressman Mike Coffman (CO-6), Congressman Phil Roe (TN-1), and Mr. Thomas Woodburn (Legislative Assistant to Congresswoman Diana DeGette (CO-1)). ."The ability to withstand major downturns in the economy is particularly important in retirement, yet extraordinarily difficult for today's retirees and those nearing retirement," says Johnson. "There are a number of factors that are reducing available retirement income from traditional sources," Johnson says. … Continued
Congressional Corner August 2015 2
In addition, the bill would help finance Part D benefits. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office estimates the bill will save Medicare billion over a decade and save beneficiaries billion in out-of-pocket costs over the same period. .As you know, the medical expense deduction is essential for older Americans who disproportionately experience high medical costs for prescription drugs, medical equipment, or services like nursing home care. Around 5 million taxpayers, most of whom are over the age of sixty-five, rely upon the tax deduction when their out-of-pocket medical costs total more than 10 percent of their annual income. .A new report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says that undocumented immigrants who receive work authorization are eligible to receive Social Security and Medicare benefits on the basis of their work history. Under current law there's no citizenship requirement to receive benefits, but individuals must be lawfully present in the U.S. That will mean higher spending on Social Security and Medicare in the future, the CBO said. While the CBO said new payroll taxes would boost Social Security and Medicare's financial condition in the short term, in the long term federal spending would increase significantly as those people became eligible for benefits. … Continued
Assuming you might need 9 (100/ml of Lantus) every 90 days, here's how the Medicare Drug Plan Finder shows typical costs: Please note this example is from the state of Virginia, and costs vary somewhat depending on where you may live. .To receive benefits on your ex-spouse's record, you must be unmarried, and your ex-spouse must be entitled to a Social Security retirement or disability benefit. But don't try to take it sooner than age 66, or you will lock in a permanent reduction for your own retirement benefit, even if you take it later. .TSCL strongly supports legislation that would correct how COLAs are calculated to more accurately represent what seniors and the disabled must spend on their out-of-pocket healthcare costs. We strongly encourage you to contact your Members of Congress and attend local town halls during the upcoming campaign season. Help us make the case why a fair and adequate COLA is a necessity to protect Social Security benefits from losing buying power as costs rise. .As far as the other three orders are concerned, it has been reported that consumers may not notice immediate changes since the orders must be carried out by the federal bureaucracy and could face court challenges. .This week, TSCL announced its support for legislation that Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (CA-46) recently re-introduced: the No Social Security for Illegal Immigrants Act (H.R. 2745). Each year, millions of unauthorized workers use invalid, stolen, or fraudulent Social Security numbers to get jobs in the United States. Later, if they receive "green cards" or work authorization, they may file a claim for Social Security benefits based on those illegal earnings. TSCL feels that Congress should put an end to this practice in order to protect the integrity of the Social Security program and to prevent further strains on the Trust Fund. Rep. Rohrabacher's bill – which was introduced with twenty cosponsors last week – would do just that, and we look forward to working with him throughout the 113th Congress to help build support for it. . You bring up an important gap in our Social Security protections. In order for children to qualify for a Social Security dependent benefit, that benefit would need to be based on an account of a parent who meets eligibility requirements for Social Security and is deceased, disabled, or retired. The parent would need to meet the eligibility rules in order for your grandson to receive a benefit based on the parent's account. However, if the biological parent has not yet met all eligibility rules then, in order to receive a Social Security benefit, you would need to first adopt the child so that he qualifies for a benefit based on your account. .Medicare Part D is a rip off. My wife and I will pay more for our medication now, because we cannot afford to take the risk of not enrolling. We were getting most of our drugs from Canada, but under Part D we not only have to pay a monthly premium, but also have co-pays, plus much higher prices for our medication to meet the deductible or if we hit the doughnut hole. Forcing us to do this is simply not fair. What happened to the legislation to legalize the importation of drugs from Canada? ."To lower the expected cost of these new benefits, House Democrats have proposed introducing the new dental benefits starting in 2028, ramping up the coverage over five years." .The Senior Citizens League (TSCL) shares Senator Nelson's concerns, and we are hopeful that Congress will take action in the near future to ensure lower out-of-pocket spending for Medicare beneficiaries. In the weeks ahead, we will continue to monitor the confirmation of Congressman Price, and we post updates here in the Legislative News section of our website.