by: Erica Byfield Updated:
ATLANTA, Ga. - Some Georgians may see their insurance rates jump nearly 200 percent.
Georgia's Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens issued that warning on Tuesday.
Hudgens told Channel 2's Erica Byfield Obamacare is to blame.
"Overall, the cost of insurance is going up and I'm worried Georgians can't afford it," he said.
Hudgens showed Byfield a letter he sent to Kathleen Sebelius, the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services.
The letter reads, "Insurance companies in Georgia have filed rates plans increasing health insurance rates up to 198 percent for some individuals. Georgia consumers cannot afford these massive rate increases."
States are required to submit their rate information by July 31.
Hudgens said about 25 percent of the state's population would be affected; specifically people who own small businesses or are self-employed.
Obamacare requires insurance companies to provide insurance to people who are currently shut out.
Hudgens told Byfield an outside group reviewed the new proposed Georgia rates and determined six out of seven of the insurance companies weren't gouging people. Instead, he said the rates were spot on and went up because of the terms of Obamacare.
"California's rates for individual rate polices went down and I think we need to look into whether the insurance industry is being far to Georgia consumers," said Democratic Georgia State
Sen. Nan Orrock.
Hudgens' closed his letter by making two requests. He asked for an emergency
30-day delay to review the insurance rates and requested Sebelius' department to examine the rates and show why they aren't justified.
"If she won't give me the extension that I'm asking for then tomorrow I have to approve or disapprove," Hudgens said.
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