Businesses with 50-99 employees now have until January 1, 2016 to provide affordable health insurance. Yesterday, the U.S. Department of the Treasury and the Internal Revenue Service announced that the government will again delay the Employer Mandate provision of the Affordable Care Act for these mid-sized employers. In order to be eligible for this extension, employers of 50-99 workers must certify, under penalty of perjury, that they have not cut existing staff merely to qualify for the extension. This is the second time the requirement for middle-size businesses has been postponed.
Under the Act, larger companies must offer the coverage in 2015. These larger companies will benefit from a different type of Obamacare extension. Yesterday, the agencies also announced a new rule allowing large employers to phase in the percentage of workers they cover. Employers with 100 or more employees will have to offer affordable health insurance to 70% of full time workers in 2015 to avoid penalties, instead of 95% of full time employees as originally required.
All employers should review these changes in order to retool their Affordable Care Act compliance plans.