By Elizabeth A. Anderson, Jumpstart:HR
Despite the U.S. Department of Treasury announcing that the penalties under the Employer Shared Responsibility provisions are being delayed until 2015, the transitional relief DID NOT delay the requirements for employers to give notice to employees of Exchange coverage options. These notices are still being required to be provided to all current employees by October 1, 2013. Since this is a requirement, and has an attached deadline, you might be wondering what this means exactly and what you should do about it.Need a Notice? We can help!
WHAT TO KNOW:
Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), your employees will be able to enroll in State or federally facilitated Health Insurance Marketplace (known as “Exchange”) by October 1, 2013. This coverage will be effective starting January 1, 2014.
You (the employer) are required by the ACA to provide notice to ALL current employees with information on the Exchange by October 1, 2013. You are also required to give this notice to all new employees at the time of hire, or no later than within 14 days of their starting date.
ALL employers are subject to this notice requirement. This is regardless of your employee’s plan enrollment status and regardless of whether they are part-time or full-time employees.
WHAT THIS MEANS:
This is not following with the Employer Shared Responsibility provisions, which generally apply only to employers with at least 50 full-time employees. So, this means that you, the employer, despite who you employ, have to follow these requirements by the given deadline.
Note that notices are not required for dependents or other individuals who are not employees.
WHAT TO DO:
The notices sent must include specific information about the following:
The services provided by the Exchange
How the employee can contact the Exchange
Information about you (the employer)
Information about any employer-sponsored coverage that is available
Advice to the employee regarding the information he or she will need to gather in order to apply for coverage through the Exchange
Notices must also be free of charge and sent by first-class mail or electronically (if the U.S. Department of Labor’s electronic disclosure safe harbor rules are met).
WHERE TO GO:
For more information on this subject matter, please see below.
Additional details from ADP Research Institute: http://www.adp.com/tools-and-resources/adp-research-institute/insights/insight-item-detail.aspx?id=50C63B0A-7ACC-43E9-AE0E-D48CD0039B59
IRS Notice2013-45: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-drop/n-13-45.PDF
U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) Technical Release 2013-02: http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/newsroom/tr13-02.html
Model Notice to Employees of Coverage Options (for employers who offer health plans): http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/pdf/FLSAwithplans.pdf
Model Notice to Employees of Coverage Options (for employers who do not offer a health plan): http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/pdf/FLSAwithplans.pdf
Additional information for employers regarding the Affordable Care Act: