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Letter urging the House to vote NO on the Expatriate Health Coverage Clarification Act (H.R. 4414)

April 09, 2014

Dear Representative:

On behalf of the three million members of the National Education Association and the students they serve, we urge you to vote NO on the Expatriate Health Coverage Clarification Act (H.R. 4414). We are concerned that it could create serious gaps in important health care benefit protections for lawful permanent residents (green card holders) and people with non-immigrant visas living and working in the United States.

H.R. 4414 is designed to accommodate health plans serving workers who perform their jobs in multiple countries. And while it is reasonable to grant some flexibility to health plans to ensure that complying with the insurance laws of multiple countries does not create unreasonable inefficiencies and new costs, we believe H.R. 4414 creates unintended problems.

This bill could undermine benefit protections for 13 million green card holders, people with work visas, and individuals who are granted visas for humanitarian reasons. It exempts employers and insurers from abiding by the coverage standards for such workers set by the Affordable Care Act — they would be allowed to judge for themselves whether coverage is adequate. Provisions of the bill to limit the exemption to plans focused solely on covering expatriate workers are inadequate.

For these reasons, we urge you to vote NO on H.R. 4414. We stand ready to work with Congress to preserve and strengthen the protections the Affordable Care Act provides for all working families.

Sincerely,

Mary Kusler
Director of Government Relations