The Treasury Dept. and IRS recently issued their final regulations, implementing the employer responsibility provisions under the Affordable Care Act, which will take effect in 2015.
The final regulations will simplify employer-reporting requirements. If employers choose not to offer insurance to their employees, these regulations will make employers share in the insurance payment responsibility beginning in 2015, in order to help offset the taxpayer costs of these non-insured employees to obtain affordable health care through the Health Insurance Marketplace. This policy change will obviously affect employers and small business owners:
Small Business; defined as businesses with fewer than 50 employees, are not obligated to provide coverage or fill out any sort of forms in 2015. Small businesses make up approximately 96% of all employers.
Large Business; defined as businesses with 100 or more employees, are obligated to offer at least 70% coverage in 2015, phasing upward to 95% in 2016 and beyond. Those large businesses that do not properly cover its employees will need to make employer-responsibility payments in 2015. Large businesses make up approximately 2% of employers.
Moderate-Sized Business; defined as businesses with between 50 and 99 employees, need to report on their workers and their coverage in 2015, but will not be applicable for an employer-responsibility payment until 2016. Moderate-sized businesses make up approximately 2% of employers.