Health care mandate delayed for employers of less than 100

Health care mandate delayed for employers of less than 100

Employers received a delay in their health-care coverage requirements under the Affordable Care Act, under regulations issued earlier this month. Those with 51 to 99 employees are required to provide health care coverage, but will not be penalized for not offering it, until January 1, 2016. Employers with 100 or more workers will have a phased-in requirement: They must cover 70 percent of their employees starting January 1, 2015, and 95 percent starting January 1, 2016.

Small businesses with 50 or fewer employees arent required to provide coverage or fill out any forms. They may buy health plans through the Small Business Health Options Program (SHOP). Technical problems have delayed its start from last October until Fall 2014.

NADA urges dealers not to wait to provide coverage, The association expressed concern that the shifting deadlines may cause uncertainty for individual dealership employees.

On the consumer end, some of the technical problems with healthcare.gov and the state exchange websites are easing, and more people are signing up for coverage. Enrollment for health insurance through the websites jumped 53 percent in January, said HHS, for a total of 3.3 million since October 1. About 25 percent of the newly enrolled are aged 18 to 34.

The number of DC residents who signed up through DC Health Link rose nearly 30 percent in January, for a total of 26,180 enrolled to date in the District.

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