HHS Unveils Rule on Exchanges as IRS Continues Health Reform Push

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The Department of Health and Human Services releases final rules (CMS-9989-F) offering a framework for states to set up health insurance exchanges under the health care reform law, as the Internal Revenue Service continues work on tax guidance in this area on a parallel track. Guidance efforts at the two agencies come as deadlines approach for states to set up the exchanges under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. An IRS spokesman confirms that the HHS final rule is separate from tax guidance under way on health care exchanges. However, the HHS guidance does provide that eligibility determinations for premium tax credits and cost-sharing subsidies must be made through public exchanges.