Legislation, Backed by New York Farm Bureau, Aims to Lower Health Care Costs For Self-Employed
WASHINGTON, DC—Today, Representative Antonio Delgado (NY-19) and Representative John Joyce, M.D. (PA-13) introduced the Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act, bipartisan legislation that would make changes to the tax code to level the playing field for self-employed small business owners by making sure that self-employed individuals can access the same tax deductions as corporations when it comes to health insurance premiums. The bill would allow the over 1.7 million self-employed individuals in New York to deduct their health care premiums as a business deduction, saving self-employed individuals an average of $750 a year.
“Small businesses and self-employed owners are paying too much in taxes. Many family farmers are self-employed owners and during this down farm economy, our out-of-date tax code leaves farmers and self-employed business owners behind by failing to allow them to deduct health insurance premiums as a business expense.” Delgado continued, “I’m proud to introduce the Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act, bipartisan legislation to level the playing field for small business owners and ensure that self-employed individuals receive the same tax benefits as corporations when it comes to health insurance costs. This common sense legislation will lower small business owners’ health care costs, and put more money into the pockets of New York’s self-employed.”
“As a both a physician and someone who has built a business from the ground up, I understand that health care costs for self-employed individuals are far too high. The Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act is a common sense reform that will level the playing field between hardworking small business owners and corporations when it comes to health care. This measure will be especially helpful to the farmers of Pennsylvania’s 13th District, many of whom are self-employed. One of my primary goals in Congress is to reduce health care costs for my constituents, and I urge House leadership to take up this bipartisan legislation as soon as possible so that goal can be accomplished,” said Congressman Joyce.
The Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act has been endorsed by the New York Farm Bureau.
“New York Farm Bureau supports Congressman Delgado’s efforts to reduce the cost of health care for farmers in New York and across the country through the Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act. Farmers, who are often self-employed, are responsible not only for the day-to-day operations of their farms but business costs, including health insurance premiums. Allowing farmers, a full tax deduction for health insurance premiums, against both income taxes and self-employment taxes, will make health care more affordable for farmers, especially when the agricultural economy is facing challenging financial times. This legislation would benefit farmers across the country, as well as the millions of self-employed businesses that are the backbone of rural America,” said New York Farm Bureau President David Fisher.
Employees and employers each receive a tax benefit for contributing to an employee’s health insurance premiums—employees are able to utilize pre-tax dollars for their share while employers deduct their contribution as a tax-exempt business expense. Self-employed individuals pay taxes as both the employer and employee, however, current tax law prohibits them from deducting this contribution as a business expense as other employers do. The Tax Fairness for the Self-Employed Act would allow self-employed individuals to deduct their health insurance premiums as a business expense, and continue to allow them to deduct costs from their individual income tax. This legislation will help individuals in both urban and rural areas who are the backbones of their communities and puts the self-employed on equal footing with other businesses.