Will there be Hidden Penalties due to the ACA Delay?

Have you considered what is in store for companies in 2015 with the delay of the Affordable Healthcare Act (ACA) reporting requirement?  While the reporting requirements for companies with 50 or more full time employees (FTE’s) and the associated penalties/assessments have been delayed, the premium tax credits for employees are still available.  This tax credit allows employees to enroll in a qualified health plan through the government that is more affordable than what their company is offering. 

With the original bill, employers would be penalized $2,000, beginning in 2014, for any employee who enrolled in the exchange program because the employee could not afford the employer’s health care offering.

Questions About Penalties

There are two questions that arise. The first is - should companies still try to cohere to the minimum guidelines that were originally laid out and strive to offer affordable health coverage now? Doing this will hopefully deter employee’s from enrolling in the exchange in the future therefore minimizing the chance employers will incur fees. 

Another question to consider - what if a company has employees that enroll in the exchange in 2014? Will the employer receive penalties that are not expected in 2015?  What will those costs be?

With the limited information and direction given at this time, companies must try to plan ahead and prevent unexpected penalties.  The best option for company’s with 50 full time employees may be to stay on track by offering affordable coverage to their employees.

This should give you something to think about…

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