I’ve heard that Obamacare is going to affect everyone, but I was also told that it wouldn't affect us because we have less than 50 employees. Which is correct?

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA), commonly known as Obamacare, will affect everyone to some extent. For instance, all employers will have to notify their employees of the existence of the exchange starting October 1, 2013. (The Department of Labor has a model notice that you can use to notify employees either electronically or by physically handing it to them.) By 2014, all employers will have to report the value of health benefits on employee W-2 forms. And in 2015, all employers will have to report if they offer a plan, if it meets the minimum essential benefits, and if it is considered affordable under the terms of the PPACA.

Moreover, employers with less than 50 employees who do have a group health insurance plans will be affected by the new 30 hour-per-week rule, because that will now be considered full-time (and therefore eligible for health insurance). In addition, waiting periods on all plans will be a maximum of 90 days (not “first of the month following 90 days,” but 90 actual days).

However, it is also true that employers with less than 50 full-time equivalent employees are considered small employers and are not subject to many of the mandates of the PPACA. There are also tax credits available for employers with less than 25 employees that meet certain other qualifications. For more information, please contact us.

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