February 10, 2014
In a new rulemaking “interpretation” of the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act issued by the Internal Revenue Service today [click here for the IRS rule], employers with between 50 and 99 workers won’t have to provide health insurance until 2016 under Obamacare, as the administration said it would again delay a part of the employer mandate of the health law.
Larger firms of 100 or more employees have to cover at least 70 percent of the workforce starting in 2015.
“While about 96 percent of employers are not subject to the employer responsibility provision, for those employers that are, we will continue to make the compliance process simpler and easier to navigate,” Assistant Secretary for Tax Policy Mark J. Mazur said in a statement. “Today’s final regulations phase in the standards to ensure that larger employers either offer quality, affordable coverage or make an employer responsibility payment starting in 2015 to help offset the cost to taxpayers of coverage or subsidies to their employees.”
The rule provides employers far more flexibility than allowed by the language of the health law, which levies fines of as much as $3,000 per worker against firms that don’t comply with the requirement – until you get to the part of the rule where in order to “qualify” for the delay the employer may not reduce the size of its workforce or reduce the hours worked. Government gives – then government takes.
The Obama administration’s decision means many small businesses won’t have to worry about complying with the law’s requirement next fall, about the same time voters are going to the polls in congressional elections. Republicans are using the troubled roll-out of the health law against Democratic candidates in this year’s campaigns for the Nov. 4 election.
The Administration claims it gets to unilaterally change implementation dates from the federal statute as it sees fit, others strongly disagree. As was the case in the previous delay, there will be issues among carriers confused about what to do with the federal law as well as state insurance commissions responsible for implementing the law in the various states.
Why Do You Have a Trade Association?
lev·er·age, lev·er·aged, lev·er·ag·ing: verb, “to exert power or influence on…”
Whether association members have government relations challenges, pubic relations problems, tax issues or figuring out what to do under a constantly evolving and perplexing federal health insurance law – associations thrive in an environment when they can use the leverage of the strength of the numbers of their members to focus on solving problems as a group.
Private Association Health Insurance and Employee Benefit Marketplaces
Private association health insurance and employee benefit marketplaces are all about leverage – bringing a wide variety carriers who offer health insurance and other employee benefits together with your members who need those benefits all in one safe, convenient and constantly updated place your members can trust. Regardless of what comes out of Washington, every day your members need the best advantages they can get to help them with their employee benefits and associations can give them exactly those advantages through your own association marketplace.
America’s largest businesses have used private marketplaces for a decade. Now, we bring the power of expanded choices, comparison technology and management tools to your members through the leverage of their associations that they would never be able to access by themselves as small businesses.
In addition to expanded choices in a true free market under your association’s name, making the lives of your member’s easier and relieving them of many of the burdens of managing modern employee benefit programs – we keep you and them up-to-date on the latest machinations in the benefits world and from government.
Use Your Association’s Leverage Now…
We make your association’s members lives easier now. Join associations from New York to the Carolinas in giving your association’s small business members the leverage big businesses have used for a decade.