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ACA and Entrepreneurial Independence

On the eve of Independence Day, I want to take a moment to look at a unique comparison between our country’s founding fathers and the people who have helped create jobs for you and me: the American entrepreneur.

Although separated by time, the two have something in common in the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The federal government’s controversial legislation has our founding principles and entrepreneurial spirit on the proverbial pins and needles.

Once independent in nature, entrepreneurs have helped lower the country’s unemployment rate; according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, start-ups in their first year of existence currently create around 2.5 million new jobs annually. These entrepreneurs have to think like our country’s founders, in that they establish positive cultures that support their employees; otherwise, those employees might look to leave … and start their own independent company. Sound familiar?

Employers value those workers who exude entrepreneurial spirit, because outside-the-box thinking can yield unique solutions to drive revenue. On the other hand, if that spirit grows untamed, employers stand to lose that top talent to the allure of going solo. An entrepreneurial exodus is what employers may face due to feelings of independence and ACA’s influence.

According to Forbes, four stipulations exist within the ACA that prove “a boon to entrepreneurs,” potentially encouraging these workers to leave full-time employment behind for a shot at independence and opening their own shop. The first and foremost is simple enough: They can afford to.

While a Gallup-Healthways poll found that 25 percent of entrepreneurs went without health insurance two years ago, the ACA makes coverage affordable, especially with extending the deadline of young people remaining on their parents’ plan from age 19 to age 26.

With those extra seven years of security, Forbes reported, young entrepreneurs were more than twice as likely to set up shop for themselves. In 1776, life expectancy was right around 35 years, so the idea of today’s 26-year-olds still being dependent upon their parents would be as alien as putting man on the moon.

How many budding entrepreneurs do you have in your organization? And how many of those top performers already may be plotting an exit strategy to lead the charge for independence?

Obviously, America’s founders had the foresight to develop a business plan in the U.S. Constitution, a document that has evolved for more than 225 years. While a lot has changed in the business landscape across those two centuries, a lot has changed in the four years that the ACA became effective, too. Either example stands as a solid reminder that business plans aren’t set in stone. It is smart to revisit your goals constantly and consistently, several times a year.

As it was with the Constitution and is with the ACA, things change. In order to thrive and remain relevant, don’t be afraid to amend your business plans.

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.