The Obama Administration's July decision to make 2014 a transition year when it comes to the employer mandate and some employer reporting requirements of the new health care laws buys larger employers some extra time, but the rest of the law is moving forward as scheduled, according to the NRA. It posted a blog this week breaking down some important dates.
Upcoming deadlines include:
Oct. 1, 2013: Exchanges open. Government-run health insurance marketplaces, also known as exchanges, must be up and running by Oct. 1 in all states to let individuals and small employers enroll in private health care plans for 2014.
Oct. 1, 2013: Employee-notification rules. All employers covered by the Fair Labor Standards Act are required to provide written notice to employees about health care coverage options through the new health insurance marketplaces/exchanges.
Jan. 1, 2014: Individual mandate. With limited exceptions, all Americans are required to obtain "minimum essential coverage" — through their employers, exchanges, Medicaid/Medicare or elsewhere — for themselves and their dependents or face potential tax penalties.
Jan. 1, 2015: Employer mandate. Employers who average 50 or more full-time-equivalent employees over the 12 months of 2014 are considered "applicable large employers" for 2015, and will be required to offer full-time employees and their dependents the opportunity to enroll in a qualifying health plan starting in 2015, or face possible penalties.
Jan. 31, 2016: Large-employer reporting requirements. Employers covered by the employer mandate will be required to file their first annual information return with the Internal Revenue Service by Jan. 31, 2016, about any health care coverage offered during 2015. Similar information must also be sent to employees.
The NRA is also urging Congress to change parts of the law, including changing the definition of full time to 40 hours a week from 30, and eliminating the automatic-enrollment requirement that would force employers with more than 200 full-time employees to automatically enroll full-time employees in company health plans if employees failed to opt out by a certain date.
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