Important Update on the Affordable Care Act
The Employer Shared Responsibility Provisions under the Affordable Care Act has been postponed to 2015 from 2014. According to the White House blog, "This allows employers the time to test the new reporting systems and make any necessary adaptations to their health benefits while staying the course toward making health coverage more affordable and accessible for their workers."
The Internal Revenue Service will be releasing an updated questions and answers page about the requirements soon. In the meantime, employers can view the Notice at http://www.irs.gov/uac/Newsroom/Questions-and-Answers-on-Employer-Shared-Responsibility-Provisions-Under-the-Affordable-Care-Act.
For a refresher on the Employer Shared Responsibility Payment, please visit Healthcare.gov and read the article What is the Employer Shared Responsibility Payment?
Health Exchange Programs
Maryland Health Connection
In Maryland, the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP) will open on January 1, 2014 for small businesses with one to 50 full-time equivalent employees. SHOP allows small businesses and their employees to compare private health plans online. Follow the links below to read more. SHOP Fact Sheet:
Health Care Tax Credits for Small Businesses Fact Sheet: http://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/Health-Care-Tax-Credits-for-Small-Businesses.pdf
To learn more about SHOP and the Small Business Tax Credit associated with the Affordable Care Act, please visit: http://www.marylandhealthconnection.gov/small-businesses.
Please note: for Maryland individuals, open enrollment begins October 1, 2013 with benefits becoming effective in January 1, 2014.
District of Columbia Health Benefit Exchange
In the District of Columbia, open enrollment for the Health Benefit Exchange will begin October 1, 2013. This will be for both individuals and small business with one to 50 full-time equivalent employees. For more facts on the District's Health Benefit Exchange, please visit http://hbx.dc.gov/node/316502.
Small Business Tax Credit
Click here for information to determine if you qualify for the small business health care tax credits: https://www.healthcare.gov/will-i-qualify-for-small-business-health-care-tax-credits.