January 16, 2015 |
DON TOLLEFSON took a bruising under cross-examination yesterday from the district attorney who had been champing at the bit to get to him. On the eighth day of his charity-fraud trial, the former Philly TV sportscaster underwent a stinging inquisition by Bucks County Chief Prosecutor Matt Weintraub, who got Tollefson to admit that money was transferred from his Winning Ways charity Bank of America account to his personal PNC bank account on many...
January 11, 2015 |
John Gellert had health insurance for the first time last year. The self-employed Juniata resident qualified for a tax credit subsidy on the Affordable Care Act marketplace and bought Independence Blue Cross' silver tier Keystone HMO Proactive plan. He liked the plan and was ready to renew last month when he was told that he no longer qualified for a marketplace subsidy because his income was below the $16,105 federal poverty level. The marketplace representative "asked a series of questions and that's when I knew that I didn't qualify," said Gellert, 57. "That's when I said I need to look to see what I qualify for. " The deadline to have insurance for Feb. 1 is Thursday.
January 4, 2015 |
Christine Bergstresser has read the Affordable Care Act. OK, not all 11,588,500 words. But more of the law than most people, including - probably - some elected officials in Washington. "I have read the majority of it," says Bergstresser, 43, a certified application counselor. "Some of it you can really kind of skim through. " Certified application counselors help people enroll in Obamacare. Bergstresser volunteers for Enroll America, a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization whose goal is to get Americans covered by health insurance.
December 29, 2014 |
The top consumer stories of 2014? It depends on how you count and what you care about - or maybe even on where you sit. If you've been sitting, say, in the back seat of a Toyota in recent weeks - after the automaker's unusual advice to avoid the front passenger seat while waiting for back-ordered Takata airbag parts - then the year's topmost consumer story may be the series of disclosures about how the auto industry hides risky defects. Were you one of roughly 10 million Americans who gained health insurance in 2014?
December 28, 2014 |
The only thing riskier than opening a cafe/art gallery in a blue-collar, Maxwell House-coffee-drinking Port Richmond neighborhood is living without health insurance. M.L. Simone has done both and is still around to talk about it. A decade ago, the 46-year-old Delaware native wanted to open a small coffee bar that doubled as a gallery where local artists could display their work. The spillover from the Northern Liberties zip code had already pushed Fishtown rents out of her reach.
December 24, 2014 |
WASHINGTON - On her final day of voting after a decade in Congress, Allyson Y. Schwartz reflected. The Montgomery County Democrat sat in the Rayburn Room, just off the House floor, and discussed her proud moments, her future plans, and the divisions that have come to define Congress. Schwartz, 66, spoke at the end of a long congressional career that followed a stint in the state Senate and concluded after an unsuccessful run for governor of Pennsylvania this year. Buzzers rang to signal the coming votes, some of the last for her and U.S. Reps.
December 21, 2014 |
For the better part of 52 years, Joseph Rosati Plumbing & Heating has offered its employees fully paid health insurance. "My father prided himself in being able to offer health benefits to his employees," says Regina Weinhardt, who, along with her brothers, Joe Jr. and Anthony, took over the company after their father died in 2007. But when the company was ready to renew its group policy last month, Weinhardt got a bad case of sticker shock - an 87 percent rate increase. Her broker was able to find Weinhardt a more affordable policy with less coverage.
December 17, 2014 |
Maybe the boxes of unpaid claims should have tipped off Cynthia Holloway, trustee of the Professional Industrial Trade Workers Union Health and Welfare Fund, situated in an office suite along Route 70 in Cherry Hill. All around the country - in New Jersey, Texas, Louisiana, and North Carolina - employees, presumably covered by health insurance, were going to doctors or hospitals, but their bills were not getting paid. Clearly the fund was in trouble. Financial records were missing, state insurance departments sent cease-and-desist letters, and insurance administrators were calling Holloway to tell her that the fund was not forwarding enough money to pay the claims.
December 15, 2014 |
The story of West Chester investment adviser Rich Weinstein shows that sometimes even the White House is no match for one angry citizen with a fast Internet connection and plenty of determination. Last week, Weinstein's relentless archive-diving on the intellectual origins of the Obamacare health insurance law helped put MIT economist Jonathan Gruber, often hailed as an "architect" of the plan, in the dock for hours of embarrassing interrogation from the U.S. House Oversight Committee.
December 7, 2014 |
Terry Sullivan doesn't like the Affordable Care Act. Never will. Sullivan believes that the federal government has no business being involved in his choice of health insurance. For 28 years, that insurance was Independence Blue Cross' Special Care plan. But the plan was discontinued in 2013 because it didn't meet the ACA's qualified health plan standards. So Sullivan, of King of Prussia, went on the marketplace and bought the company's silver-tier special reserve plan. "I had no beef with the plan," says Sullivan, 60. It "was basically better than what I had before.