UPS to drop health care for many employees' spouses, blames Obamacare

It’s a common scenario. You and your spouse have jobs that offer health insurance. You both pick the better one. Well, UPS says they’ve got to cut that perk for about 15,000 UPS spouses who are covered by their own employer. UPS blames the Affordable Care Act.

Randall Bovbjerg, a senior fellow at the Urban Institute, says it’s true, Obamacare will add costs for a variety of reasons.

They need to cover employees or pay a penalty, although that’s been postponed for small employers,” Bovbjerg says. “Looming in the future, is firms with particularly generous packages will have to pay a Cadillac tax.” But Bovbjerg says, the full impact of Affordable Care Act on companies is really uncertain.

Christopher Flavelle, an editor with Bloomberg View, suspects this is long-term cost shifting move.

It does seem extremely convenient to use the Affordable Care Act as a reason for what would already be an unpopular shift,” Flavelle says.  

Flavelle says, UPS may have made the change anyway even without the Affordable Care Act. But we’ll never know.

About the author

Queena Kim covers technology for Marketplace. She lives in the Bay Area.

Comments

I agree to American Public Media's Terms and Conditions.
With Generous Support From...