The House of Representatives has passed historic legislation with the aim of providing medical coverage for virtually everyone in the United states. How is this going to impact us as Realtors? We are all essentially independent businesses; and as such we must make the decision to "buy" coverage or "roll the dice" and hope we, or a family member, don't need medical attention. In Rhode Island, a family plan can run from a little under $1,000/month to almost $2,000/month - not exactly pocket change. For those of us who "roll the dice", assuming we are in good health, we may have no medical bills for years, unless tragedy strikes. A car accident or even a slip and fall could land us in the hospital and that is where all savings could be wiped out. But would we be "denied" coverage? From what I have read over the years, it seems Emergency Rooms treat plenty of patients who do not have coverage; in RI they have been required to provide coverage for anyone whose income is at or below 200% of the Federal Poverty Level. So how is this new "right" to " free" healthcare going to impact us small business people?
It is my belief that we, collectively, are going to pay more money, for less service, of a lower quality. The Federal Government does not have a good track record of running businesses. Look at Conrail, Amtrak, Medicare, Social Security, and the USPS. The reason is that the government does not have to be run efficiently - as small business people must if they hope to survive. If the government needs more money they can confiscate, I mean raise, more money by increasing taxes, or they can just print more money. Wouldn't it be great if the small business person could do the same when more money is needed? Somehow I don't think that would fly. I digress...the question remains how are we as small businesses going to be impacted? If we are going to receive a net benefit from this historic legislation, why should we care that the government is taking over such a large portion of our economy? My own personal belief may be tainted by my political perspective so I am asking my colleagues in the industry: How do you feel this historic legislation is going to impact the small business person and the "Independent Contractor"?