Local attorneys review health care law highlights

2012-08-23T20:32:00Z 2012-08-24T09:18:05Z Local attorneys review health care law highlightsBy Molly Smerika Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
August 23, 2012 8:32 pm  • 

VALPARAISO | Americans could face higher taxes in the next 10 years as a result of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, according to a panel of local attorneys.

The health care law calls for many new taxes, including an individual mandate tax, taxes on capital gains and dividends and a tax on health insurance programs, residents learned at Thursday’s forum.

“It remains to be seen how this impacts our country economically,” Marc Ruiz, one of the panelists said. “The cost of the health care law is going to filter down. It will dramatically increase taxes in the next 10 years if not repealed.”

Seniors learned about the impacts of the health care law at a forum  sponsored by Rice & Rice Attorneys of Valparaiso. Ruiz, from Oak Partners, and Bill Green, of Green Law Offices, were joined by Cliff Rice as the three panelists.

“We’re always looking to see what affects our clients,” said Rice. “We have about 5,000 families that we do estate planning for over the past 40 years, and Obamacare seemed like something people were interested in and had questions. We’re trying to reach out to the people, help them, engage them and understand the interests to their families.”

The forum, originally part of the firm’s Legacy Club, was opened to the public after more people became interested, said RG Skadberg who works at Rice and Rice.

“We were looking at doing some workshops … especially concerning Medicaid and Medicare — they’re living in that world. I think that’s one of the things that shakes their foundation about this health care reform,” said Skadberg, who served as emcee.

The forum tried to stay apolitical, but Skadberg noted that there are some politics in the bill

“We started a living trust, and we needed all of the information we could get,” said Diane Rogers, of Lowell, who attended the forum with her husband. “They were able to answer our questions, but most of them we already knew. We thought Cliff was great, we really liked him.”

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