Category Archives: ACA

Affordable Care Act and Your Small Business

You want the best for your employees (and their families), and you know that making sure their health needs are met has been proven to decrease turnover, increase morale and keep your employees well enough to do their jobs worry-free.  With the changes in healthcare, you may question what this will mean to them and your business.  Even though the answers may be different for each business; here are a few facts to help you make important decisions regarding your employees’ wellness, regardless of your business.

–          Notifications – Employers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act must make sure all newly hired employees (as of October 1, 2013) are provided with notification about the new Health Insurance Marketplace.  Employers must let employees know they may be eligible for a premium tax credit if they purchase coverage through the Marketplace, and that they may lose the employer contribution (if applicable) to any health benefits plan offered by the employer.

–          SHOP: Access to Health Care Marketplace – Employers with up to 50 full-time or full-time equivalent (FTE) employees will have access to the new health care insurance marketplaces through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP).  Employers with 25 or fewer full-time or FTE employees may also participate in SHOP and may qualify for a small business health care tax credit which is worth up to 50% of your premium costs.

–          Medical Loss Ratio & Rebates – Employers could receive a premium rebate if their insurers do not meet their Medical Loss Ratio.  Employers who receive these rebates and determine that the rebate constitutes a plan asset may determine a reasonable and fair allocation of the rebate.

–          Employer Shared Responsibility – Though employers are not required to provide coverage to their employees under the Affordable Care Act, employers with at least 50 full-time or FTE employees that do not offer health coverage will be subject to a shared responsibility payment under the health care law.  View the chart below.  Businesses with fewer than 50 full-time or FTE employees are generally not affected by these provisions.   Click here for more information.

–          New Wellness Incentives – The Affordable Care Act creates new incentives to promote employer wellness programs and encourages opportunities to support healthier workplaces.  A wellness program can be provided to promote health and fitness at the workplace or insurance plans can offer them directly to their enrollees.

The WBDC is holding a workshop to address the questions of small business owners on March 12, 2014.  To learn more and to register today, please click here.  For more information about the Affordable Care Act, please visit www.healthcare.gov.

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By: Kristin Travis, Illinois PTAC Associate

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