The new health insurance marketplace effective January 1, 2014 is primarily focused on providing low cost options for individuals and families. The marketplace will provide many plan options from several top insurance companies, all displayed at one website. For those individuals and families with household income below 400% of the federal poverty level (FPL), government subsidies will be available to reduce premium costs.
For example, a family of four earning less than $94,000 per year and an individual earning less than $46,000 per year will qualify for government help. These same subsidies are not available if insurance is purchased through a group. Marketplace quotes will be available after October 1, 2013 for January 2014 enrollment.
Below we have outlined three of the most important requirements and provisions of the health reform bill:
Employer Mandate (tax/penalty): Starting in 2015 employers with 50 or more full time employees who do not offer affordable group health insurance to their employees will be subject to an annual penalty. In simple terms, the penalty will be $2,000 per employee per year after certain adjustments. For example, an employer with 500 fulltime employees who does not offer affordable group health care will have a penalty of over $1 million per year.
Employer Summary of Benefits and Coverage (SBC): Employers who have had a group health insurance program in the past have always had a requirement to create a handout/document for their employees benefit called a summary plan description. Effective October 2013 the federal government has increased the penalty and oversight to make sure employers are in compliance. We recommend you contact your agent and insurance company to provide the proper documents to your employees.
Notice of Exchange (Health Insurance Marketplace): The Obama Administration wants to aggressively promote the health insurance marketplace which is effective January 1, 2014. The government is strongly recommending that all employers provide a notice to their employees announcing the existence of the exchange including specific information about employee eligibility in enrollment in the marketplace. http://www.dol.gov/ebsa/pdf/FLSAwithplans.pdf
Please call us at 1-888-506-1574 for more information on Health Reform and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield.