Insurance Premiums Will Rise in 2015 – But Not by Much

Virginia insurance carriers have already filed their plan adjustments for 2015, indicating expected rate increases.

Early predictions of 2015 insurance rates had insurers raising premiums by exorbitant amounts to compensate for higher costs and restrictions imposed on their fee structures by the Affordable Care Act, as well as the greater health needs of previously uninsured enrollees who obtained healthcare during the open enrollment period. However, if Virginia filings are representative of how the nation will go then average rate increases will fall short of expectations.

Average increases will not apply equally to policyholders across the board, and range from just above three percent to nearly 15 percent depending on the provider. Those averages, meanwhile, will vary greatly in their individual application. Some providers are adjusting for average enrollee ages that skew higher, as age is one factor that allows them to differentiate. Providers are no longer able to price their premiums based on the enrollee’s current health unless s/he is a smoker.

Some states such as Washington may release their 2015 rates within the next several weeks, though most will complete their projections by the end of the summer.

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