Tuesday, June 04, 2013

Obamacare Will Boost Self-Employment

Despite all our talk about the entrepreneurial spirit, the percentage of Americans who are self-employed is lower than in most other developed countries. The reason is our awkward system of employer-provided health insurance, which throws entrepreneurs under the bus of the private health insurance market. Studies have shown that workers are much more likely to strike out on their own if their spouse has employer-provided health insurance or when Medicare coverage kicks in at age 65.

Obamacare may change that. According to an Urban Institute study, implementation of the Affordable Care Act (otherwise known as Obamacare) will boost the number of self-employed Americans by 1.5 million in 2014, an increase of nearly 12 percent. The Urban Institute's state-by-state estimates show self-employment rising by 248,000 in California and 124,000 in Texas (if the ACA is fully implemented, that is). The increase will exceed 50,000 in six other states. In Massachusetts and Vermont, no increase is forecast. That's because those states have systems similar to Obamacare already in place.

Source: Urban Institute, The Affordable Care Act: Improving Incentives for Entrepreneurship and Self-Employment

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