Category: Individual Healthcare Mandate

Health Care Reform and the Individual Healthcare Mandate

Starting in 2014, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will implement an individual healthcare mandate, requiring virtually every American to purchase medical insurance. Those who don’t purchase the insurance will face a tax penalty at the end of the year.

But the individual healthcare mandate is just one of several mandates set forth in the comprehensive overhaul President Obama ushered in during 2010. Because of the sheer depth of the medical reform, many are confused about what exactly the individual healthcare mandate means.

Essentially, it means everyone is responsible for purchasing and maintaining the “minimum essential coverage” for basic health needs. Minimum essential coverage is defined as securing coverage either through a government-sponsored or employer-sponsored health insurance plan, a private health plan, or any other health benefit plans recognized by the Health and Human Services secretary.

The idea, in part, is that the overall cost of healthcare in the United States will decline if millions of Americans were not paying for the uninsured. Businesses are also required to offer health care insurance to their eligible employees or be subject to penalties. Businesses do, however, get tax write offs, maxing out at 50 percent of paid premiums for each employee.

Penalties start accruing in 2014 and gradually increase by 2016. For instance, in 2014 the tax penalty will be the higher of $95 per uninsured person for each household up to three people ($285) or 1 percent of taxable income. This will increase in 2015 to the higher of $325 per person (up to $975) or 2 percent of taxable income. And by 2016, the penalty will be $695 per person up to $2,085 or 2.5 percent of taxable income, whichever is greater.

Learn more about health care reform and how the PPACA will affect you and your family by reading below. Stay informed on the latest information by signing up for the HealthReform newsletter.

Special Enrollment Periods?

Open Enrollment for the Affordable Care Act (ACA) ends on March 31, 2014. Effective April 1, 2014 – November 14, 2014, individuals must experience a Qualifying Life Event (QLE) to be eligible to enroll for coverage during a Special Enrollment Period (SEP). So, what exactly is a Special Enrollment Period and how would one qualify for this?  Here is a chart that may help you with that: Life Event SEP Window Effective date (subject to… Continue reading

Ch Ch Ch Ch Changes! Countdown to 2014.

If your role within your firm involves you touching any part of your group health insurance plan, these past few years have been anything but boring.  Though there are still some legislators talking about killing the Affordable Care Act (dubbed Obamacare) by defunding it, it seems that most have agreed that it is finally time to understand and embrace the coming changes from Health Reform. That shift in thinking comes just in time for some… Continue reading

Employee Exchange Video (in under 10 minutes)

The following is a brief (under 10 minutes) update prepared for Employees who are currently receiving the Federally mandated Exchange notices.  Feel free to share.

Further Delays For Obama’s Health Care Reform

On Wednesday July 17, the House of Representatives voted for further delays in the current administration’s Health Care Reform. In addition to a delay in the employer mandate the individual mandate is now under discussion. President Barack Obama responded, saying. “Despite all the evidence that the law is working the way it was supposed to for middle class Americans, Republicans in the House of Representatives voted, for nearly the 40th time, to dismantle it.” New… Continue reading

Boehner Calls For Vote To Delay Individual Mandate

The implementation of the employer mandate provision of the Affordable Care Act was pushed back from 2014 to 2015, and now the individual mandate is at risk of being delayed as well. The mandate, which would require that individuals buy health insurance or pay a penalty, is set to go into effect in 2014. However, after the White House’s decision to hold off requiring businesses with 50 or more full-time workers provide insurance, House Speaker… Continue reading

Major Provision of The Health Care Reform Delayed: What Now?

The Affordable Care Act was launched in 2010, and while it never had a formal start date, the Obama administration has announced that the implementation of one key provision will be delayed until 2015. That delayed provision, known as the “employer mandate,” requires that any business with more than 50 employees must provide affordable health insurance coverage or pay a penalty. This delay will give administrators on both the business and government ends time to… Continue reading

The IRS and Health Care Reform

As the nation continues to move toward massive changes in health care policy, certain government bodies are responsible for different aspects of the legislation and implementation. The Internal Revenue Service has a particularly significant role because the Affordable Care Act (ACA) contains the largest set of tax provisions and law changes in over two decades. Many supporters claim that it only makes sense to ensure the IRS helps oversee implementation of 500 new provisions and… Continue reading

What is the Health Care Marketplace and How-To Navigate it

Employers and employees are justifiably curious about how the Affordable Care Act will affect coverage, insurance rates, premiums, and other aspects of healthcare. Designed to help individuals and families choose the health care product that is right for their needs, the Marketplace is a robust and comprehensive one-stop-shop for health insurance needs. Proponents of this model hope that the hassle of reviewing eligibility and plans will be eliminated and that easy comparisons will be made… Continue reading

Affordable Care Act Employer Mandate and Rules for Controlled Groups

With changes in the administration of healthcare coverage and benefits, many employers are left wondering how they will be affected in 2014. Regulations involving a new employer mandate will require shared responsibility for full-time employees and reasonable minimum value health insurance coverage. While this regulation will affect companies that have more than 50 full-time or equivalent employees, some organizations may wonder how they can restructure their organization to avoid these new Affordable Care Act (ACA)… Continue reading

Navigators vs. Agents and Brokers

In a recent poll by Aflac, an overwhelming majority (76 percent) of workers surveyed admitted they were not knowledgeable about the federal and state health insurance exchanges created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA also created new insurance programs, incentives and penalties, giving consumers and small businesses a whole new system to learn. To help consumers and small businesses make choices about coverage options within the exchanges, the ACA requires each state to… Continue reading