Time is running out! Today is the final day to comply with the federal government’s Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act provision to notify employees of their health care exchange options and information regarding their existing insurance plans, if applicable.
With ACA, employers have good reason to be more confused than ever, especially with the Oct. 1 Notice of Marketplace requirement. In a recent survey conducted by Paycom, 72 percent of employers said they “could know more” about ACA requirements, while 18 percent reported knowing nothing about the law.
Those aren’t particularly shocking statistics, but what is stunning is the number of employers – 61 percent – who had yet to notify employees of the exchange.
Potential for noncompliance fines aside, employers should educate their employees on ACA’s sweeping changes, including the establishment of health insurance exchanges opening today nationwide.
Because the exchanges have been a hot topic since ACA’s inception, employees will be expecting some type of notification. Those confused about the new law will seek guidance from employers on what steps to take before Jan. 1, 2014, when those who fail to have health insurance will begin facing penalties of their own.
Effective today, employers are required to convey the following information to their workforce:
- the existence of exchanges,
- a description of the services provided by exchanges,
- how the employee can find and contact an exchange,
- that the employee may be eligible for a tax credit if the total cost of benefits provided by the employer’s plan is less than 60 percent of his or her income, and
- that employees choosing to enroll with an exchange may lose the employer’s contribution toward health coverage.
How Paycom Can Help
So where to start? Right here:
- Visit the U.S. Department of Labor’s website to download the Model Notice of Exchange, whether or not your company offers health insurance.
- Send the notice to employees along with an FAQ providing answers to employees’ common questions regarding health insurance options on the state and federal levels; HealthCare.gov is a good resource for such information.
- For information on how health coverage will affect employees’ taxes, the IRS website addresses ACA tax provisions.
Paycom has helped employers across the country stay a step ahead of ACA requirements. Paycom’s continuing webinars walk employers through features of Paycom’s cloud-based, workforce-management application that prove especially useful for ACA compliance.
For the Notice of Exchange requirement, Paycom offers electronic delivery of notices to employees with its Document Management/On-Boarding features. Employees can view, sign and acknowledge the notice online, as well as refer back to their rights at any time through the Employee Self-Service portal.
It’s not quite too late to notify your employees … but time is ticking. Empower your employees with the reform information they need today.
The content of this blog is intended to keep interested parties informed of legal and industry developments for educational purposes only. It is not intended as legal opinion or tax advice and should not be regarded as a substitute for legal or tax advice.