Confused About the Affordable Care Act?

If you Affordable Care Act confusionfind the Affordable Care Act confusing, you aren’t alone. Thousands of business owners and executives are looking for answers.

Regulations are still being developed and published.  Information ranges from  helpful to inaccurate, and it is hard to know which is which.  Deadlines are delayed because information or infrastructure is not ready.  It is confusing.

There are some things that remain clear.  Government at the federal and state levels continue to forge ahead with development of the new health insurance exchanges.  The Employer Shared Responsibility (employer mandate) will become effective in 2014, and employers across the United States are looking for help in understanding how it will apply to them.

Here’s where some of the confusion enters.  The Affordable Care Act uses full-time employees in some of its provisions but full-time equivalent employees in another.  This is especially important when looking at whether a company exceeds the “50 employee” threshold.  Many authors refer to it as 50 full-time employers; however, this is not correct.  The requirement is actually based on full-time equivalent employees.  Consequently, a small business with 45 full-time employees might be subject to the employer mandate if it has enough part-timers to push it over the threshold.  Even then, however, the Affordable Care Act only requires that employers cover full-time employees.

Employers also ask about what the fines and penalties are and how they might apply.  What many people don’t know is there are actually two separate penalties.  One applies where an employer does not provide health insurance.  A separate penalty applies when offered coverage does not meet affordability or minimum value requirements.  In either case, penalties only apply if an employee purchases health insurance through a health insurance exchange.

To help you start cutting through the confusion, we designed some simple, FREE tools to help get you started in finding the answers you need.

For more information or help in assessing the ACA’s effects on your company, contact us at Soter Healthcare.

On January 31, 2013, posted in: Uncategorized by
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