The Case against Mandated Employer-Provided Employee Health Insurance

Mandated employer-provided health insurance comes in three principal flavors: a pure mandate, requiring an employer to provide and pay a fixed percentage of an employee’s health insurance premium; a mandate requiring an employer to provide and pay a fixed percentage of payroll for employee health insurance (with some mechanism to transform unequal per capita premium payments into equal per capita policy benefits); and a mandate requiring an employer to provide employee health insurance or pay a tax, the so-called “pay-or-play” option. The three are essentially the same in their effects on employers and employees as are the arguments against them, allowing discussion of only the first as representative of three, given it is the simplest and cleanest.

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