Although the employer mandate has already kicked in, there are still more healthcare reform requirements that employers have to worry about. It is strongly suggested that organizations begin the prep work now for these five requirements:
1. Reporting requirements – this is the first year for which employers will have to report information to the Irs on the types of health coverage offered to employees, as well as to whom it is offered. The reporting is not due until the first quarter of 2016, but employers should have begun gathering the data by no.
2. Nondiscrimination rules – At some point, the feds will issue their health reform nondscrimination rules that are supposed to prevent health plans from discriminating by favoring highly compensated employees. The goal is to prevent plans from offering highly paid individuals benefits not open to lesser-paid workers. The feds are still working on the rules for this.
3. Cadillac tax – When the ACA was enacted in 2010, the “Cadillac tax” was an afterthought for some companies because it wasn’t going to kick in for eight years. But now, we’re just three years away from 2018, when employers will have to pay a 40% excise tax on the value of any healthcare coverage that exceeds $10,200 for single coverage or $27,500 for family coverage. Employers should be looking at their insurance trends now to see if they’re likely to hit this threshold and determine if they want to make changes to avoid the tax.
4. Automatic enrollment – Employers with more than 200 full-time employees will have to automatically enroll new full-time employees in one of their employer-sponsored health plans — as well as re-enroll those already receiving benefits — once the regulations regarding this requirement are issued (employees will be given the option to opt-out). But, as with the nondiscrimination rules, the feds appear to be having trouble producing them. The regs were expected in 2014, but they never came. Still, if you’ve got more than 200 employees, gear up for this requirement to become a reality shortly.
5. Minimum value rules – Under the ACA, employer-sponsored health coverage must provide “minimum value” for the employer not to be hit with penalties. But plans only have the proposedminimum value rules to work off of. The final rules have yet to be published. These rules were expected to be issued within the first two months of 2015, but we’re still waiting. It’s possible they may require changes to your plan to avoid future penalties.