Employers must offer health insurance that is affordable and provides minimum value to their full-time employees and their children up to age 26 or be subject to penalties. This is known as the employer mandate. It applies to employers with 50 or more full-time employees, or full-time equivalents, and will be phased in during 2015 and 2016 based on employer size.
Employers with 100 or more full-time employees and full-time equivalents and employers with 50-99 full-time employees and full-time equivalents who do not qualify for transition relief will need to comply in 2015.
Employers with 50-99 full-time employees and full-time equivalents who qualify for transition relief may be able to delay implementation until January 1, 2016, or in some cases the first day of their plan year in 2016.
A penalty would generally apply if an employee applied for coverage in the Individual Marketplace and was deemed eligible for a subsidy either because the employee did not receive an offer of minimum essential coverage or the coverage the employer offered did not meet minimum value or affordability requirements.
For plan years beginning in 2015, employers with 100 or more full-time employees must offer affordable/minimum value medical coverage to 70% of their full-time employees and their dependents to age 26. Employers must treat all employees who average 30 hours a week as full-time employees. Employers who fail to meet the employer mandate will pay a penalty of $2,000 per full-time employee minus the first 80. Some employers will need to expand coverage in 2015 to meet the 70% requirement while others won’t.
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